“Farmer is a happy crook. Jesus hates him every day. Cause Jesus gave and farmer took.”
You no longer need to work on Maggie’s farm. Near-global, all-digital, easily accessible platforms bring the world to you.
With little effort, minimal costs, and a few keystrokes, you are everywhere, and everyone who connects with you becomes a walking, talking, image-making proponent of your brand, every customer a positive ripple in the commercial marketing zeitgeist — remember, this requires near nothing from you — you are fully realized, able to launch a business, sell your wares, instantly satisfy wants, needs and fulfillments inside a dizzying partly-physical, slightly virtual planet-spanning logistical ecosystem.
It is glorious.
Technology should enable us, extend us, liberate us, maximize our talents, our skills, our commitment.
But I remain uneasy.
Logan Paul is a very popular “YouTube star” with millions of viewers — literally, despite the fact that you never heard of him. His various antics are watched by millions mostly on small screens, smartphones, tablets, laptops. He earns a great deal of money through YouTube advertisements.
Many people were upset by how they viewed Mr. Paul’s response to recently “finding” a dead body.
These people, certain their righteousness was more right than others, took to the same semi-global platforms to howl their outrage. Google promptly marginalized Mr. Paul’s YouTube channel.
Which is fully their right, in America, in the early 21st century, given that it is their platform.
Except, there aren’t very many of these wondrous platforms. Maybe there can’t be?
If you can’t express your thoughts on Twitter, or promote your wares on Facebook, or upload your video to YouTube, that low-barrier, low-cost, giant-digital mart gets really small really fast.
Should we allow this?
Three companies — Google, Facebook, Twitter — all headquartered in one small area of one state in the United States can, anytime they wish, marginalize any business, any talent, any idea, any voice.
That’s far too much power.
For now, I am not suggesting we seek government redress. But, we must keep vigilant.
But wait. There’s more.
Let’s imagine a world where Google, Facebook and Twitter — and nearby Apple, which makes the world’s most popular smartphone, the prime entryway to our global bazaar, which is made in a democratically-opposed nation — all always do the right thing.
They are tolerant of voices and ideas and the many ways these are expressed.
No fears, everyone hop aboard!
Everyone’s able to buy and sell and market and collect in this glorious grand parade of digitalized commerce.
But shouldn’t there be more?
Check out my Amazon e-store!
Use the brand code from my Instagram feed!
Click on the App Store link on my blog!
All well and good, true enough. But it’s just stuff and money, honestly.
I deeply appreciate the always-learning, never-sleeping, constantly-iterating, desperately-challenging consensual hallucination that is capitalism. I do. It has extended our lives, broadened our minds, liberated our days.
But all we’re doing with these blessings is consuming.
That seems like a major failure on our part — not something we can blame on technology or capitalism or even small minds.
Let’s stop being afraid.
Let’s build what comes next to be better than who we are now.