Posts Tagged With: social media

Instruments of Tyranny

In the November 1970 issue of National Geographic, an article entitled “Behold the Computer Revolution,” has Peter T. White breathlessly writing on the coming changes computers would bring.  Among them are paying your bills by computer, a “truly theft-proof” credit card, the impending arrival of home computer use, and many more examples how the computer would touch every corner of our lives. This was about a decade before computers started entering homes, and over two decades before the internet would morph into the world wide web. And then White shares this from a Professor Alan F. Westin:

Man has progressed over the centuries from the status of a subject ruler to that of a citizen in a constitutional state. We must be careful to avert a situation in which the press of government for systematic information and the powerful technology of computers reverse this historical process…making us ‘subjects’ again.

Perhaps what we need now is a kind of writ of ‘habeas data’ — commanding government and powerful private organizations to produce the data they have collected and are using to make judgements about an individual, and to justify their using it.

Now, forty-eight years later, we have fallen into the very scenario that Westin warns about. It happened little by little, yet largely out in the open. How many major data breeches at banks and retailers, how many shady government data collection schemes, or how many social media abuse revelations, must continue to happen before people realize that technology is no longer their tool to control?

How long until we realize that it is being used to control them? To spy on them? To shape their beliefs?

If you read my last post, you can’t help to agree that Distraction is our greatest downfall. It is what politicians have long used to cling to power and shape our world. Corporations and social movements use it to mold your thoughts. Be happy with who you are — only if that “who” is on the approved list. Do what you want — only if that “what” is on this other list. And computers have been used with frightening efficiency by social engineers and by those who subvert democratic processes.

In 1970, some warned that “the computer’s potential for good, and the danger inherent in its misuse, exceed our ability to imagine. Wouldn’t that be the worst it could do — to become an instrument of tyranny, propelling mankind into a new dark age?”

And decades before that, Orwell, Huxley and Bradbury warned us in their fiction. Some people have listened.

Many more have not.

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Categories: Critical Thinking, Modern History | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Share Your Story, Be Authentic

The internet is a wild and woolly place and this can make it hard to truly connect with other people. Are there ways to make this easier so you can truly “friend” those who would like to hear or read what you have to say?

Melyssa Griffin explains 17 Things for optimizing your blog posts so people take notice of them.  What about your newsworthy Facebook posts? Here are tips on using those hashtags to put those posts in front of more readers.

But wait, there’s more…

Making connections, networking, “building your tribe,” or whatever you want to call it, all mean the same thing, but this is only half of the equation. Sure, you want people to read what you write, or buy what you have to sell — maybe you even want to make a living at it — but you have to show that you’re more than just the next guy or gal peddling this or that.

Show them why what you have to say is important to you, and them. Prove why your story is important to theirs. Creating a team, a tribe, or a movement, requires authenticity. Be a human, not a faceless voice.

 

Categories: Writing | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Join the War, Choose a Side on Facebook

I have relaunched my author page on Facebook. Originally, I had it set up under my book series name, but it makes more sense to be under my name as the series grows (which is how most authors set up their author FB — today’s free social media tip). You’ll see some shared posts from this site, but new content as well. More coming soon, so be sure to join the War Among the Shadows on Facebook right now. Are you ready?

Categories: Books, Writing | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Get to Work: Marketing Part 1

Regardless of how you publish your book, expect to do one thing when you are not busy writing your next book: Marketing.

There are many authors out there who have shared their marketing stories, and the lessons they have learned, good and bad. Here we will review two of them, but first let’s take a look at a couple maxims to keep in mind. Continue reading

Categories: Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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