Thursday, 2 May 2013

How Long Until Social Media is Powered by your subconscious?

Technology moves fast, I used to have to dial up the internet and wait for webpages to download, now I'm annoyed if a video doesn't stream instantly. The worrying thought is, what if they develop a way of being able to stream your thoughts on your social media platforms. They are already figuring out ways to predict the things you do and don't want to see, and they do with some degree of accuracy.

Today saw an announcement by Facebook, they would remove video content, the content in question is video showing decapitation. That's pretty gruesome to say the least, also given the demographics imagine your child asking you why that man got his head chopped off.

Facebook at first said: ""Thanks for your report. We reviewed the video you reported, but found it doesn't violate Facebook's Community Standard on graphic violence, which includes depicting harm to someone or something, threats to the public's safety, or theft and vandalism."

They then changed their minds: "We will remove instances of these videos that are reported to us while we evaluate our policy and approach to this type of content,"

But it is not as gruesome as if you actually could see what people were thinking about, people have horrible thoughts all the time, they post things which sit just inside the comfort line of being OK if your granny sees it on her timeline. But if it was straight out your brain, most men's feeds would be filled with random images of Hot women, an odd really sick joke and then about ten percent of useful content. Women's feeds would be lots of pictures of Hot women they wish they looked like, lot's of worries and cries for help and then 10% useful content (that is if Women's magazines are a good measure of a ladies brain activity). 

The one thing about the Internet that made it so special was being able to create and define who you really wanted to be through your own output. Being able to display your personality in 144 characters or less, your sense of humour, your concerns, your lack of knowledge and a whole lot more. The internet didn't have a report card from your school showing people you were in fact "A very smart boy who doesn't apply himself enough and constantly likes to distract the less able pupils".

 But like any technology, the Internet a playground where you could literally be anyone, it has been abused by people either for commercial gain or seedy adventures. A 50 year old man pretending to be a 13 year old girl is perhaps not a good use of the Internet, but it shouldn't then be used as an excuse to rain on my free parade. A guy in Taiwan downloading 15,000 movies a week to sell on a market stall is an abuse of copyright, but shouldn't affect the episode of Game of Thrones I want to watch now because US TV has it months before it is aired here in the UK. A guy uploading a decapitation Video on Facebook is in poor taste, but shouldn't be used as a way to silence very real and meaningful debate on political matters by introducing a hard line deletion programme.

You see the Internet is one of those rare things in the modern world, a technology given to the people to shape the future. All that is happening now is a massive race between Multi-National Companies, Countries and the people to become the owners of it. It's like the moon landing race, except this time there is no quick stick a flag on it and claim it's ours, this is a long road, systematically eroded are the rights of residents of countries, state sponsored clawing back some of those freedoms we enjoy. We must ensure that not only do we not allow over regulation of this great resource, but also that our own resources are not used against us by the very people who wish to control us.

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