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TECHNOLOGY’S EFFECT ON SOCIETY

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 24, 2015

BRYCE ON TECHNOLOGY

– Technology is an effective tool for civil unrest and war.

(Click for AUDIO VERSION)
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In the past, I have discussed the adverse effects of technology, focusing on its addictive powers on a personal level, (see Bed Bugs & Our Changing World”), but what about society in general? As I concluded in my “Bed Bugs” paper, personal technology plays a detrimental role in the public’s moral values, and the rise of a “socially liberal” agenda. It is also a catalyst for social activism. For example, personal technology (smart phones, the Internet, and social media, etc.) was actively used in the riots and protests of Ferguson, Baltimore, New York, and other places, not to mention the Arab Spring of 2012. It was also a key factor in the Occupy Wall Street movement a few years ago. Abuse of such technology has demonstratively led to civil unrest, civil war, mayhem and violence.

People using such technology no longer subscribe to the rule of law, preferring to use it for agitation purposes instead. To illustrate, in the deaths of Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, and Eric Garner, the people did not embrace the simple concept, “A person is presumed innocent until proven guilty.” Instead, the people charged with the deaths were tried and found guilty in the court of public opinion. Regardless of the legal outcome, the protestors and rioters rejected the verdict and caused helter-skelter. The news media shares some of the responsibility for their “sensational” reporting, thereby fanning the flames of outrage.

In the Middle East, Muslim extremists have long understood the power of personal technology and use it to devastating effect. Groups such as ISIS, Al-Qaeda, Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, et al, use it for communication purposes in waging war, recruiting, public relations (such as when they butcher innocents), and intelligence gathering. Without technology, these groups would be disorganized and rudderless; so much so, the world would likely not know who these groups are, and their power would be dissipated.

From this, we can conclude the use of personal technology has had an adverse effect on the world socially. It therefore seems rather obvious thwarting the use of it in times of crisis would be an effective deterrent to the break up of communications and mob rule. This could easily be done by creating jamming devices for smart phones, blocking social media, or simply suspending the Internet. Without such communications, leadership and coordinated activities break down, making it easier for law enforcement to disperse mobs.

Critics would argue such blockage is an affront to the freedom of speech. Not necessarily. Freedom of speech is not applicable in creating crisis, such as when a person falsely yells “fire” in a theater. The same can be claimed when violent confrontations occur between police and rioters and looters. Freedom of speech is one thing, a danger to society is another. Nonetheless, some 1st Amendment lawsuits are likely in the offing.

Whether it is the police trying to control civil unrest, or the military fighting our enemies, the key to subjugating opponents is through personal technology. If you take it out of their arsenal, you have greatly improved the odds for dominating your opponent.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

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Copyright © 2015 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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4 Responses to “TECHNOLOGY’S EFFECT ON SOCIETY”

  1. Tim, the implicit corollary to your ‘rule of law’ point (and a direct result of the pervasiveness of tech and especially of social media) is the turning of local news stories into items of national or even international import. Local entities are no longer even given the opportunity to deal with local problems. One might question whether either their resources or sense of good will/intentions would be adequate to do so, of course, but we rarely have any opportunity at all to find out. National and international news coverage instantly becomes pervasive, bringing with it the professional agitators and ‘spokespersons’ for the aggrieved community (whom I hold in particularly contempt). As it is a tragic mistake to attempt to keep events of the sort we’re seeing in any sense ‘under wraps,’ so to is it so often a profound disservice to a local community to simply assume the ill will of local leaders and institutions and then to see them hammered by events crafted (even if the original problem was not) to be out of their control.

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  2. […] TECHNOLOGY’S EFFECT ON SOCIETY […]

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  3. […] “Technology’s Effect on Society” – June 24, 2015 “Bed Bugs & Our Changing World” – June 1, 2015 “Honest Debate (or the lack thereof)” – October 13, 2014 “More Evidence of Technology Addiction” – April 23, 2014 “Let’s Sit Down and Talk” – March 5, 2014 “Our Smartphone Addiction” – September 13, 2013 “How Technology Affects Our Youth” – December 4, 2011 “Is Personal Technology a Drug?” – June 18, 2011 “The Digital Pandemic” – March 17, 2010 “Show Me the Proof” – June 5, 2009 “The Adverse Effects of Technology” – Jul 09, 2007 […]

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  4. […] Bugs & Our Changing World” – #3 overall “Technology’s Effect on Society” “The Effect of Social […]

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