People are once again up in arms. Now it’s about Cambridge Analytics and their relationships with social networking giant Facebook and the ultra-right wing party members who have turned to big data as psi-weapon in what they see as a culture war.
No one should be surprised that the ultra right is striving to exert mind control over people via social media. It’s the natural next step in a system where the stakes are as high as they are and people are validating their world view via social media. Of course people are going to try to control the social media pipe. Particularly conservatives. Because conservatives need to control.
That’s what net neutrality has historically been about. Control and money. Well, it always comes down to money. And where there’s money, the need to control is not far behind.
I know, people unable to think more broadly fail to consider proposals that do away with this arcane structure (debt-based currencies, markets and governments). I don’t blame them because the nature of some such proposals stretch the imagination. They also fail to solve significant barriers to making them happen.
But that doesn’t mean there aren’t some gems among them.
Solving problems such as the ethically questionable relationship between the social media giant and the data mining consultancy is a simple matter if your brain can wrap itself around doing away with money and replacing it with something promising to perform better.
Here’s why looking at alternatives is an idea worth considering. Especially today:
- With money out of the equation, and replaced by a reward system that is morally superior, people who make things can’t get rich doing dastardly things in the dark.
- With a superior incentive model rewarding people who make things, there is no need for data privacy, for in that context (of a superior incentive model) total transparency allows for far more open architectures, including a free and open internet, a richer cultural milieu, and therefore progress and innovation.
- Under a superior incentive model, rapid social progress will make the world better for more people faster without that progress happening at the expense of conservative-minded people. Actually, conservatives with a penchant for controlling others may have a problem, but so many people don’t have this penchant, control freaks will finally be able to address their problem, instead of making their problem the problem of others as a result of conservatives trying to control others. (In the superior incentive model, healthcare is available to all at no cost to anyone, so getting high quality mental health assistance is a snap.)
Don’t worry. Civilization won’t fail because Facebook stock lost more than $30B in value. We’re in store for much worse happening. That’s because more people are asking for a better solution to the world’s problems. A better solution than capitalism. Or any of the other systems on our planet. And the worse it gets, the more those seemingly strange alternative models will begin to look more reasonable.