Before picking up Jaron Lanier’s book, I’d listened to several of his talks on the subject of social media’s ongoing damage to individuals and society. I was quickly convinced that the reasons for his urgency to pull the plug on the likes of Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter were right on. And while a few months ago I had already begun the unplugging, inactivating several accounts, I was not ready to completely let go of years of posting, liking, and what have you. Not only after listening to a few hours of Lanier! I needed to read the footnotes. I needed to see the scientific evidence for myself. I don’t mind being challenged in my beliefs, but I’m not about to delete all such connections to friends, to family, to the whole wide world without reading more.
And so, I’ve read more of what the father of virtual reality has to say. I’ve read the footnotes (not all) through Argument One: You are losing your free will. The end is in sight for me and social media.
No matter how you read Sartre, hell should not be other people. And neither should heaven, for that matter.
How did we get to this point? Frightening. But it can be changed. There is still hope.
But I must say, I will miss watching videos like this on Youtube:
Where else can you be assured by a sommelier from NY that a Crozes-Hermitage 100% Syrah does not taste like a manure Burgundy but on social media?