Thought for the Day …
by Kelley White
It’s easy to victimize the mentally ill, particularly in the age of the Information Super Highway. It just takes technology. All of the means released in the recent WikiLeaks publication to include the tools they gift site visitors? These same tools can be used against you. Corporate entities, foreign and national entities, private individuals and or any combination of the above can wage cyber warfare without your knowledge or consent attempting to rewire your brain just like a pigeon with a Skinner Box.
You no longer control the content you see or when you see it. You see what algorithms serve. We trust these entities to act ethically in our best interests as they tell us they are collecting the data and invading our privacy. How many apps downloaded to your phone grant the app creator access to your phone mic, contacts, or other data secured on your phone? When you download the app you consent. Essentially this becomes a non-consensual consent.
The consumer assumes the corporate entity will respect their right to privacy as they waive their right to privacy placing the desire for convenience and or content over privacy. They assume that if at some point the entity will request additional permissions before it avails itself of the ability to eavesdrop or photograph. One of the benefits of a dissociative identity disorder is that in moments of clarity you can analyze and qualify over a broad spectrum based upon research and direct experience. You can with more objectivity determine the paramount patterns with an interface which to date lacked human emotion.
The very illness which makes it challenging to cope with your day to day environment gives you a hyper- focus which blinds you to the macroscopic day in day out reality of living. No sense of time, lack of core constancy, inability to create and sustain structure, inability to tolerate protracted or pronounced external stimulus now work to one’s advantage.
I internalize and personalize emotionally external stimulus. Personalization is the literal consequence of objectification. Personalization is a component of hyper vigilance which attempts to remain tactical to retain maximum control over physical security. If you personalize within a contextual framework of rational empathy? If in addition to this you are empathic, mentally ill with no core sense of self you can be easily manipulated. You lack all credibility because it is assumed you distort reality when you are mentally ill. It’s like when we speak to the elderly as though they were two.
Social media is the ultimate form of personalization.
Each feed is a virtual reality unto itself. Now if you listen to someone’s immediate environment, (Ie: listen to them via their microwave for giggles?) Then imagine their computer activity and their living environment syncs with their Facebook feed?
At what point does the line between tangible and virtual reality blur?
I think we imagined that the two realities would remain simultaneously accessible yet physically distinctive. In a post-human world, it is logical that the two would at some time merge. I think we the consumer naively assumed we would control this merging and it too would be distinctive and within our means to control. Working over multiple platforms and noting the prevailing trends within each platform to trigger me with the same emotional triggers within content in conjunction with real time events which could only be known to people or me with intimate knowledge of me then? The merging of the physical with the virtual becomes so pronounced if one can disassociate and withstand the triggers long enough to observe the content and the emotional reaction to the content delivered? The content is deliberately delivered in this fashion over a protracted period. It can and does modify behavior.
Neurotics build sandcastles in the sky. Psychotics live in them.
We have replaced the tangible for the intangible finding it preferable. Our finances, our entertainment, our social interaction? For so many of us who are artistic or entrepreneurial, political?
We are dependent upon literally consuming high quantities of sophisticated data for the highest and most precise form of cognitive retention. Assimilation with critical thinking in real time to respond to real-time complex interdependent systems then we have ever attempted before. We are collectively now aware in real time of anything, and everything is happening anywhere on the planet. We are omnipresent and yet not present at all. This intangible reality we are forced to remain eternally virtually present with to optimize maximum volume and profit potential becomes the cloning of virtual identities, the wholesale creation of artificial virtual intelligence (what bots truly are). I am not certain that narcissism is the original illness.
Any profession dependent upon the largess of the public must be conscious of “image.” Hereto wit “image” was carefully designed and yet there was some modicum of privacy left. We understood that privacy was vital to the autonomy of everyone. Nothing is private anymore. We are confronted with our humanity in all its messiness mirrored back within a broad spectrum of behaviors.
With awareness, we understand any of these behaviors have been or can become our own. There is no illusion of an ideal self or even a core self. By experience, Successive approximations to change which are lasting are achieved over longer periods of time. The process is not linear. What happens when you accelerate the process merging tangible reality with controlled content delivery over time? You accelerate the rate of change necessary for the individual to keep pace. If the individual has any cognitive distortion? By observation, this will be amplified.
My observation is that this has the potential to be used for the good or negative. For the social introvert, the benefit is the ability to have the perception of a social life without experiencing the painful challenge of social anxiety. To the extreme, it can become, by personal observation, a means of reinforcing patterns of social isolation which would make one more vulnerable to psychological cyber attacks which may or may not be within the awareness of the content consumer.