Our best brains today should be solving problems in water, energy – both consumption and generation, waste, efficient transportation solutions, food production and preservation, and managing climate change.
Instead, Facebook and Apple are our most valued brands, and thousands of the best minds are caught up in keeping us distracted. Through more “consumer entertainment” and essentially – timepass. Through mobile apps – over 50% of which are games. Through more and more inane and shallow conversation on flakier and flakier “networks”. Amidst all this is the messaging that drives the “monetization” of all this distraction, and its one big game we’re all playing.
Aldous Huxley was right in the Brave New World where “happiness derives from consuming mass-produced goods, sports such as Obstacle Golf and Centrifugal Bumble-puppy, promiscuous sex, “the feelies”, and most famously of all, a supposedly perfect pleasure-drug, soma.” Our capacity to amuse and distract ourselves almost feeds upon itself now – with no end to its growth in sight.
We define ourselves through the gadgets that we possess and worship, and breathe through their updates and upgrades. We live in a constructed reality that drifts away further from the real planet, real people, real food, real problems around us. Obviously, we’re not worried about, or driven enough to be solving them.
We can probably do better. Will we?