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@oio
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1Y

This topic ought to be taught in schools. We assume kids inherently know technology. They don’t. Especially not the underlying social/economic/political mechanisms. This stuff should be part of the core curriculum.

I liken it to the tobacco industry. We have a generation (gen-z and older) who are already adults. They’re out of their formative educational years so we can’t reach them by that means. They will struggle for life with how to grapple their relationship with 21st technology. For society as a whole to shift, the future generations need to be informed from early childhood. It took generations before social norms of smoking became unacceptable. I expect it will take a similar path for such philosophies of technology to turn around.

People always say the entirety of humanities knowledge is available to us. Yet the scope of this topic is incredibly subdued. It’s not in anybody’s interest to speak of it in depth so it exists on the fringes of the web.

@pyjammas
link
11Y

The problem is that schools, like any similar institution, cannot just upend how they function based on whatever new thing shows up. It’s difficult enough for teachers to deal with the half-decade interval of changes in teaching particular topics.

Of course, the problem with that is that over the past few decades our society has been changing in pretty fundamental ways at a pace that these institutions even in their ideal form can’t deal with.

The rise of the computer and then internet (for us 30+) changed everything. Then smartphones changed everything (only in 2007, and probably ubiquitous by 2010 at latest?).

An institution can’t deal with this kind of speed, but that means individual families or communities or individuals need to. Research can’t deal with this kind of speed, so even knowing the information that helps us figure out how to deal with things is woefully outdated.

I’m an optimist, so I think we’ll figure this out. But we’re in a land of confusion, and for now individually realizing this and acting with the best knowledge or intuition is the best we can do.

@oio
link
11Y

Mass media has been well studied and written about for longer than the internet has been around. It’s well known that new medium coincides in times of political and social upheaval. The details of the specific medium are fuzzy until we have the hindsight.

We don’t always have the picture before it’s come to pass and it’s not a requirement anyways. What we do is present the state of the art as we know it. That’s how technology develops too. As OP said, Zuckerberg didn’t have a clear picture of what Facebook would become. We’re a roughly 10 years into the state of affairs we find ourselves in now. There have been people studying the social dynamics of internet for as long as it’s been around.

If we can shove millions of kids through coding classes we can inform them about 21st century soft sciences as well.

Sometimes I think what our world would look like without technology in it. Seriously, just try to imagine what it would be: a paradise where people would leave their real lives, not virtual ones, or a hell because of complexity of such world?

I’m old and grew up in a world without internet, mobile phones and PCs. There were computers of course, but they were limited in their functionality. We basically used them as glorified typewriters and calculators.

Some things were better, some things were worse. The internet has given us access to unlimited amounts of information. Simple things used to take much more time. For every school assignment you had to spend hours going to the library, finding the right information you needed. Interacting with government institutions (taxes, housing, etc) was a huge hassle. These things have much improved, at least in the country I live in.

Personally, I’ve gone full circle. I grew up without any of these modern technologies. In my late teens computers and the Internet became a big thing. I fully embraced it. I was an early adopter on it all. Building websites, instant messaging, you name it. This stuff was my work and my hobby. It was literally my life. I was considered one of those “sad people that met their wives on the Internet”. Yeah, that was considered sad back then.

Then came the Web 2.0 era and with it the likes of Facebook and twitter. Next, smartphones, IoT and the rise of the Data Brokering industry. For companies, your personal information is a now a resource to be mined, analysed, bought and sold. The goal is to get as much of your attention as possible, using whatever methods needed, so they can either sell more stuff to you or sell every scrap of information they have on you.

Over the last 10 years, I’ve been steadily reducing my tech addiction. I deleted my facebook, my twitter and every other social media account. I’ve removed every app and notification from my smartphone other than navigation and calendar notifications.

I installed uMatrix in my browser to prevent any cookie from being set, and any javascript from running. No more pop-ups, auto-playing audio and video, no more tracking, no web notifications. Lots of sites don’t work anymore. That’s okay. I just won’t use those sites.

I’ve also become a minimalist in real life. I’ve stopped buying things I don’t need; cruft I can do without. I no longer browse web shops just for the fun of it. I don’t need a big smart TV, I don’t need the latest fashion and kitchen appliances or fitbits. During the corona lockdown in my country, all shops except grocery stores were closed. Nothing changed for me. It was just business (or should I say, “no business”) as usual, except for working from home.

I do, however, miss the sense of community that the early internet had. Which is why I’m on Lemmy now. This kind of goes against my “no social networks” rule, but I guess rules are meant to be broken.

So yeah, sorry about the long rant :-) I hope to read more of the interesting discussions here on digitalminimalism!

@pyjammas
link
21Y

I’m old and grew up in a world without internet, mobile phones and PCs. There were computers of course, but they were limited in their functionality. We basically used them as glorified typewriters and calculators.

I’m probably younger than you, but circumstantially I’m older than I should be. For example, I didn’t have home internet until I was in my mid-teens, and put quarters into arcades until then. that’s not common for kids born in the mid eighties.

Personally, I’ve gone full circle. I grew up without any of these modern technologies. In my late teens computers and the Internet became a big thing. I fully embraced it. I was an early adopter on it all. Building websites, instant messaging, you name it. This stuff was my work and my hobby. It was literally my life. I was considered one of those “sad people that met their wives on the Internet”. Yeah, that was considered sad back then.

I remember the mere mention of chatting online was followed by (well-meaning) warnings that I should never use my real name and beware of sex-predators. Queue Facebook a bunch of years later.

Over the last 10 years, I’ve been steadily reducing my tech addiction. I deleted my facebook, my twitter and every other social media account. I’ve removed every app and notification from my smartphone other than navigation and calendar notifications.

I also did this over the past years. Somewhat surprisingly, so did a significant portion of my 30+ peers.

I installed uMatrix in my browser to prevent any cookie from being set, and any javascript from running. No more pop-ups, auto-playing audio and video, no more tracking, no web notifications. Lots of sites don’t work anymore. That’s okay. I just won’t use those sites.

I’m okay with that too!

I’ve also become a minimalist in real life. I’ve stopped buying things I don’t need; cruft I can do without. I no longer browse web shops just for the fun of it. I don’t need a big smart TV, I don’t need the latest fashion and kitchen appliances or fitbits. During the corona lockdown in my country, all shops except grocery stores were closed. Nothing changed for me. It was just business (or should I say, “no business”) as usual, except for working from home.

Again, same here. And in my late twenties I’d have argued passionately about this. now I’m more wondering if it’s just part of getting older, and perhaps just a human’s lifecycle mixed with the weirdness of the internet.

I do, however, miss the sense of community that the early internet had. Which is why I’m on Lemmy now. This kind of goes against my “no social networks” rule, but I guess rules are meant to be broken.

More than anything, this is what I’ve been missing too. To get a bit more specific, I’m an '83 kid. I grew up consuming various internet things (Strongbad, ebaumsworld, etc.), but also being a proper participating member of various internet things (gaming forums in all their diffuse themes and qualities). I miss that so much. I miss the unique styling of, say, the Looking Glass forums. The characters on there, ranging from vanilla to self-proclaimed certified insane. The meetups that I couldn’t attend as a teen. The marriages and deaths. I’d like to have some of that back.

So yeah, sorry about the long rant :-) I hope to read more of the interesting discussions here on digitalminimalism!

Likewise!

Makkusu
mod
creator
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3
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1Y

deleted by creator

@ksynwa
link
21Y

Do you mean all technology or just social media? Because technology is kinda important to uphold modern standards of living and technology is the only way we will be able to combat climate change without intentionally sacrificing a portion of the population.

And we allowed them.

I don’t really agree with this. These social media companies are birthed from the same system that is encouraging its people to go out and die in a raging pandemic so some already rich people can get more rich. When venture capitalists decided that these platforms are ripe for advertising, there was no path history was going to take other than the platforms deploying every tool in their arsenal of psychological manipulation to get people hooked on their platforms and encroach in as many aspects of our lives until people can’t imagine leaving Facebook for the fear of alienating themselves from their friends and family or taking their business off Instagram for the fear of losing exposure.

It’s naive to think that “consumers” as a monolith can weigh the long-term repercussions of an option against the short-term benefits and democratically accept or reject on the basis of that in a direction that is best for them. The reason they can’t is because they aren’t organised in any way or form to be able to do this. Our democracy has only one body that is allowed to instate and enforce policies that would prevent the encroachment of social media into every living moment: the government. But they are in the pockets of capitalists so that is not gonna happen. The only way the social media titans of today die, if history doesn’t stray its course, is that new ones pop up that are even more potent and predatory.

Makkusu
mod
creator
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2
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1Y

deleted by creator

@pyjammas
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1
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1Y

I do halfly agree with this. Let’s not forget that they EVOLVED to such state but weren’t born with disrespect to users in their mind. Let’s take a Facebook as an example: it was born to unite classmates together and keep in touch with them BUT after it started scaling worldwide, it’s team saw an opportunity for largest profits in the history.

Zuck: I have over 4,000 emails, pictures, addresses, SNS

[Redacted Friend’s Name]: What? How’d you manage that one?

Zuck: People just submitted it.

Zuck: I don’t know why.

Zuck: They “trust me”

Zuck: Dumb fucks.

I admire your optimism, but Facebook was rotten from the start. And in my experiences many more corporations than we think either also are from the start, or swiftly become so because of ‘profit’ or ‘investor pressure’.

Digital Minimalism
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