Thursday, 17 November 2016

Fascism 2.0

I mistook the rise of 2011 protests using Web 2.0 technology like twitter and facebook as tools to promote more direction engagement.

In reality these tools are highly destructive, and need to be regulated or, most wisely,  banned in their current form.

The problem with them is the ability of people today to get just the reality they want.  When you do a Google or Wikipedia search on a subject you are likely to get stories and views you don't like.  You may disagree but you still are faced with things you don't like.

When you talk to people in a community you are likely get opinions you don't like.  You have to face them.  In the old usenet it was hard to find a community of just echoes so again you would face opinions you don't like.

The problem with social media like twitter and facebook is people build social networks on a pick and choice basis, and mass community can be constructed by a mixture of global selection of the few who agree with you and bots.

In 2016 this has combined to create bubbles.  Around the anti-Brexit and Clinton people there was a sense of massive certainty.  But worse was around the new post-fact neo-fascists which are starting to dominate white culture in the English speaking world.

People promoted total lies, memes presented utterly false narrative.  News items that could raise doubt were edited.

I was see to see my own brother promoting insane memes among his community, ignoring any critical comment and just constructing online an utterly false sense of reality that made the ultimate act of evil, voting for a neo-fascist possible and even, to him and those like him, rational.

People are lazy, they are not using to the web to promote skills, to learn things, to promote art or be creative, what is 2004.  Today everyone is on facebook, and they are using it to convert their aggressive hateful fantasies in to a  reality.

And we need to stop it.

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

My Final Judgetment: Social Media is Bad for Politics

After years of looking at these issues, creating technology that monitors social media use and tracking events from Egypt to Bahrain to Turkey and Ukraine to the UK and US my final conclusion is pretty harsh: Social Media does not facilitate democracy, rather it promotes and enables fascism.

The issue is with the Network Society and what kind of message creates identity in the Network Society.  The changes in economics and media has replaced communities with audiences, masses of people with no connection to each other via tradition.

As many Social Theorists have proposed identity plays a key role in this formation, with people creating new community based on a shared identity formed on the Internet.

But what spreads on the Internet, what identity is formed?

The conclusion I cannot escape is that what spreads in all nations via social media is a politics of hate, or racism, of pageant, of simple answers and lies. 

In the rise of ISIS, the Islamic Brotherhood, in Turkey and now with Brexit and the insanity of Trump we see time and time again that the Internets movement into politics, no matter the promise, results in more extreme right wing rule, less personal freedom, more racism and governments that are like the UK and US government now neo-fascist or outright fascist.

We see the rise of people like Putin, Boris Johnson and Trump, neo-fascist or outright fascists. 

I hope that people stop using social media, delete your Twitter and Facebook and Instagram accounts and go back to YouTube videos, blog posts, Google searches, Wikipedia and E-mail.

In short the Web of 2010 was a good instrument of growth and development.  A tool were people could find facts and make meaningful contributions to culture.  Web 2.0 is lazy and hate filled, it is simply a virus that has entered our culture far more negative than TV or processed foods or personal automobiles or any other technology that has been created, adopted and had nothing but negative impacts.