The system is broken: Technology’s disservice to the future and the exploitative nature of the digital economy.

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The fundamentals of the digital economy are broken, we have created a system that rewards the most to the people who can distract the most and sadly those being distracted the most are the youth, the literal future of the world. Society as a whole is having to compete with itself and it is losing by quite a margin.

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The social reward systems that govern this economy namely: likes, follows, and views are incredibly exploitative to a developing brain. The majority of brain and neural network development takes place during our youth and in addition to this the interests and views we primarily hold in our teen years end up forming the genesis of who we become in our adulthood, to say that the digital economy is doing a great disjustice to society is an understatement.

The Digital economy has broken the fundamental social contract that society has with itself which is that the most important members of society are those who are not yet actively engaged in a large capacity in society — “the youth”, hence we shall not allow them to have free will and we shall enforce strict guidelines like “the legal mandate of every parent to send their kids to school.” There is a massive problem with the the upheaval of this social contract in the digital economy. Because the digital economy fundamentally is different from reality it does not mirror the rules we have created throughout our thousands of years of existence on earth.

Fundamentally speaking in the reality of life to change ones identity or anonymising their identity is not as simple as creating a new account to do so one would literally have to leave and move to a different location and assume a new identity. Apart form the problematic consequences of social media as it relates to breaking the multiple social contracts that humans have established between themselves over literal millennia there is the increasing concern of the idea of “free. will” particularly as it relates to the youth. Social Media puts the interests of capital ahead of the interests of society rightfully so these are businesses who are created for profit, we must recognise the destructive nature that the technology has to the future of the world. Universally we have all agreed that children shall not be allowed to do what ever they want when they please especially absent of limitation and supervision. In the digital economy the only one supervising is the platform itself which raises some of its own ethical issues on whether data should be even collected on humans during the developmental stages. Limitations aside from the interests of big capital are non-existant and even if limitations are placed on a specific platform odds are there is a platform elsewhere that does not have the same limitations to which you can access, hence any tech survey kid with a VPN and the know how of how to use a search engine can virtually access anything.

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This free will is immensely destructive to the development of a young child the lack of constraint makes the youth susceptible to harm. This messes with the dopamine system of a developing mind, at the click of a button they can access more dopamine stimulating content then humanity has ever had access to prior and this makes the youth seem lazy because they will not do work but upon deeper inspection the work they are about to do is not nearly as stimulating as what they have been exposed to for them to engage with it meaningful it needs to be more far more stimulating and the education system is not really known for be fun or stimulating. This means the levels of stress raise as they are forced to place attention on something that has a great repulsive force exerted by their brain and the fact that a lot of digital celebrities actively vilify school is a recipe for disaster all within a young mind ill equipped to deal with the situation.

As society as a whole the biggest damaging fundamental threat to our way life is that this new digital economy, technology has become an essential part of our lives. The industry is worth billions, the majority of us will fall into one of two categories and some both. The majority reflective of the economics of any other industry will become a consumer a few will be content creators and some will be both. The problem with being a consumer in the digital landscape is that it is not like any other industry and it is literally built on breaking the conventional rules of traditional industries which means our navigation of its products and services must not be as simple as that of other industries.

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There is no end in consumption, unlike other industries the algorithms deployed in the tech industry are created to continuously feed you and never stop.The CEO of Netflix Reed Hastings said “The biggest competitor to Netflix is sleep”. Once again you find yourself having to compete with the hardest opponent — yourself, technology at its core is a plane upon which human free will of the present and its need to work for the future clash and for the unfortunate majority we simply are not equipped to wage this battle and win because our free will is always almost stronger then our discipline for the sake of the future. Capturing a persons attention as a software engineers for long periods of time is today about as lucrative as saving a persons life as a doctor. Technology has strayed far from the dream it once promised — “it would change the world it said” but in truth no one ever said the change would be good and how true that is in our torn apart society of the modern day.

Ambassador and Content Writer at Entre. At the cross section of previously unconnected ideas exists real creativity.