Here’s the problem.
And by ‘the’ problem, I mean the one that just popped into my head. It’s a small one. Larger, more complicated problems are available.
I’m interested in the online world. Not so much the cat GIF’s and Netflix, as the more sinister stuff. Not the really sinister dark-web stuff, but the insidious sinister stuff dressed up as choice.
Or free will.
Or customer service.
The stuff that creates our Facebook bubble and our targeted Google ads. The creeping algorithm-ic march of data capitalism. The polarised world we inhabit.
I’d give it a name. A medicalised one, like algorrythmia maybe, but no doubt that’s been coined and monetised by someone already.
There must be a book I’ve missed in the ‘smart thinking’ section in Waterstones called Algorrythmia? Right near to Affluenza, and Freakonomics.
And talking of Waterstones ‘the’ problem occurred to me in that very shop (other book stores are available…heaven forbid I should have any responsibility for the bubble you inhabit. Just don’t do Amazon, that’s all I’m saying. For reasons. Many of them).
I spot a book about the hows and whys and wherefores of the way the internet is fucking things up for everyone. I consider buying it. I notice it is in paperback which makes it, what, eighteen months old?
So it was probably written at least two and a half years ago.
Think back to what you were doing two and a half years ago, and why, and how, and with whom. Not very current, is it? Then multiply that by ten, because the digital world is quicker than the analog world.
That’s how current this book is.
Two and half year times ten. Twenty five years.
That book is, as a guide to the ills of the internet, is as up to date as a flyer for a nightclub you stuffed into a coat pocket back in 1993 and implausibly found again yesterday.
The club is closed, the DJ is old, and the beer is still out of date.
I don’t buy the book, and instead decide to wait for the next one. The up to date one. Then I spot it in paperback. And on we roll.
I know the internet is bad for us but I just can’t pin down the cutting-edge, up to date, here and now definitive version of why, and how, and of what to do. Because it’s always too late.
So we’re all doomed.
And it turns out ‘the’ problem is actually ‘THE’ problem. The big one. The complicated one. The one that will kill us all.
At least we managed to clear that up.
(Image: via pixabay.com)