The internet is an insidious and seductive mistress. It lures you in with promises of knowledge, fun, connection, and entertainment. All the while it is slowly and deceptively spinning a web of control. Then suddenly, one day, we wake up to realize that we are mere shells of our former selves addicted to the little rush that comes when a notification hits our screen.
Upon the recommendation of a friend I recently watched a docu-drama on Netflix called Social Dilemma. This was powerful life altering information. Much of it I kind of knew but had chosen to ignore. After all, I am in control of myself and my internet/social media usage, right? Maybe not as in control as I once thought.
I generally don’t care for docu-drama type shows. But the acted out parts of this really helped give a visual picture to the concepts being presented. It allowed me to see myself in most all of the situations and I began to realize how information is given, manipulated for monetary gain, and how we are the commodity.
The people being interviewed all worked for one of the big tech companies, many in the infancy of social media. What they have to say is informative, frightening, and yet empowering to us, the products being bought and sold.
Solution To The Dilemma
Of course, my first instinct is throw out everything and live off grid where no one can spy on me. A typical knee jerk reaction and not at all logical. So, I set about doing the next best thing. Evaluate, Extract, and Eliminate. I had to have a plan for using my online resources while doing what I can to not succumb to its power over my brain.
I know many who read this are going to think, I don’t have a problem. I know what they are doing and I don’t care. Or, this is all a big conspiracy theory and this woman is nuts. You are certainly entitled. I do ask that you watch the program and then judge for yourself. I thought I was an educated user of the internet and the myriad of apps that clutter my phone and iPad. I now know better. There is more I can, and am doing.
Google, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter are all pimps and we are the whores. Let that settle in for today. Tomorrow I will share how I am dealing with this in my life and why it is going to have a huge impact of my mental health, creative, social and family life.
Until then…go watch Social Dilemma and meet me back here tomorrow.