You know we have plenty of brainiacs in this country. The question is, why don’t any of them use those ginormous brains?
Bear with me and follow my logic for a minute.
Web 2.0 — the interactive web — launched in 2000. Facebook was founded in 2004. Twitter launched in 2007, same year as the iPhone.
Today, we are all addicted to our smartphones and social media.
Social media clearly enhances confirmation bias, which is why we call it the social media echo chamber.
Every news outlet writes headlines for clicks, likes and retweets, which further fuels the echo chamber.
Meanwhile we suddenly find ourselves in the midst of an unprecedented political divide and brutal culture war that plays out mostly on, wait for it, Facebook, Twitter and traditional media outlets.
Coincidence? You know I don’t believe in coincidences.
I mean, this is not rocket science folks.
The real question is, why do we refuse to acknowledge that the extremes we’re experiencing are fueled if not caused by our addiction to Web 2.0, smartphones and social media?
I’ll tell you why. It’s because none of us want to give it up. We’re all hopelessly addicted.
Apple and Google win big. Facebook and Twitter win big. FOX and NBC win big.
We all lose.
And yet, none of us want to give it up or even admit to the critical role each of us play in the biggest sociopolitical divide our nation has faced since the 60s.
Note I’m not blaming this on the tech itself. I believe in free markets. But when a product we all willing use all day long causes this much harm and we refuse to acknowledge that obvious fact, something is very wrong.
In any case, the answer to the problem starts and ends with you and me. You know it. I know it. And that’s the truth.
Image credit Prachatai / Flickr