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Social media – a threat to individual freedom?

I have decided to close my FB account. Probably not a big blow to FB but I believe millions of people are waking up. FB gave me reconnection with a lot of old friends, to follow family members on FB, and FB also gave me some new friends. Thank you! I have to find other ways to maintain these very interesting connections.

However, I have for a long time been “borderline” whether or not to delete my FB account. We all know that we are voluntarily sharing personal information to a degree that any “Big Brother” scenario haven’t even thought possible. I am not a big fan of regulations, but it is obvious that a serious control of the internet giants has to be established. Time for all of us to wake up guys.

The final drop for me is that 50 million US FB users have been harvested without users’ knowledge/consent and then improperly given to Cambridge Analytica – a political consultancy company willing to even undermine democracy if someone is willing to pay. No apology from FB can make it right again that they let this happen to make money. I am in the online business myself (see www.ufred.ca and www.3alt.com) and I know what kind of ethical and commercial limitations/regulations we put upon ourselves – I demand nothing less from others.

The internet giants are very dangerous. And this is only the beginning. Artificial Intelligence is happening right now, and without strict and intelligent regulations, our integrity and personal freedom is more threatened than ever before. The alternative is not to let government agencies get even more control over us (like e.g. in China and Russia) but to make regulations that prevent abuse of personal and sensitive information. Simply to make sure that our personal integrity and personal lives are private! It is actually a question about how to prevent our democracy and civilization from being totally undermined. By people that doesn’t necessarily have bad intentions, but as I see it, they simply do not understand the ethical, principal and political risks involved. It is not acceptable to be a willing and silent partner in that.

FB is the 6th most valuable company in the world by market value (2017). It is a company that produce nothing! Nothing! There is no value adding. At the same time it is maybe the most powerful company in the world, because it has collected more information about its 2,13 billion users, than the users can overview and understand themselves. That is why your personal information can be harvested, sold and used in ways that maybe is directly against your personal interests.

Kjetil Sandermoen,
2017, Zug, Switzerland

Please see all the books written by this author

 


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