Warning: This post mocks myself in places and those of you who use social media.
This site has been lying dormant for the past year or so as I have coped with a move to Wellington, new job, LIANZA Presidency and life really. Where for some people that might have led to an outpouring of creative writing or commentary, for me it has really done the opposite. My content creation has been much more in the music and photograph front, which seem to have been the ones firing for me of late.
I chuckled as I wrote content creation as I find it a rather amusing term which we use all too readily to describe what is in effect something like someone taking a photo or writing a few paragraphs. It's use some how gives a higher legitimacy to what are often the inane or fairly average musings of an individual and of course the all to common selfie. I do think we take ourselves far to seriously in this web enabled world where anyone, given a piece of technology, can "publish" themselves online. "We are the media", Amanda Palmer proclaimed sending shivers down the spines of the Rupert Murdoch's and Kerry Packers of this world. Yet where traditional media publishing is shrinking, others are making fortunes providing a self obsessed society with the means to tell there world what they had for breakfast or show their delight in the passing of the SCOTUS ruling on same sex marriage by putting a rainbow over their profile pic.
We are increasingly self absorbed, a preoccupation which is encouraged by media and by business who seek to profit from enabling this self absorption. For evidence on that you need look no further than companies that take years or decades to post a profit yet are able to have a book value in the billions. Put this together with the opportunities that a society who are in the main looking inwards provide to those who wish to more easily control us and I think we are possibly at a pretty scary point in time. I'm not going to say the scariest point in time, as we all too easily fall into the trap of being like every other generation who think that what they are facing is the most significant set of circumstances that human kind has ever faced. I'm pretty sure the Serfs of the Middle Ages didn't feel a great deal of empowerment or ability to stop those in power from controlling them. Yet I wonder if the danger here, is the perception that through the web we are all empowered when in reality we are watching the shinny silver thing while others do their dastardly work in the background. Serfs, at least, knew their lot and that they had no power.
Now don't get me wrong, I am not for one minute saying I am turning my back on the web enabled world that allows me to post with only a moment's thought essentially anything I want. I enjoy it and the outlet it provides. It's enablement to share a thought, get quick feedback and stay connected with peers locally and around the world is great. However I am left wondering if this sense of connection is an illusion in what is actually an increasingly disconnected world. When we are looking at our peers we are still in many ways looking inward, we see in them a reflection of what we want to see.
I don't have an answer to all theses musings, rather just more questions. However, I think it's important to ponder this stuff. What's important is not the shiny Apple laptop, or the rather brilliant meme we just saw or even Kim K's bum. What is important is world we inhabit, how we treat it and each other and making the most of what is a very short time we all get to spend on it and together. In the end, we individually matter very little. At at best no more than the imprint we leave on those around us after we are gone or perhaps for a few of us, the world.
Now I'm conscious this is reading like a bit of a conspiracy theory and maybe it is, but whether this is insightful, thoughtful or not, one thing is for sure. By creating this content, and if you are reading it, by "consuming" it, I've helped contribute to the very issue I am articulating.....