September 2021

Something is wrong with the internet.

Just look at social media, especially Facebook. Despite Mark Zuckerberg hoping to make it a space for connection, broken algorithms have made it a breeding ground for misinformation, disinformation, conspiracy theories (from QAnon to election fraud), and fake news.

Things aren’t much better at Twitter, a platform that’s less about amplifying minority voices and more about strengthening the influential elite; less about free speech or interesting debate and more about online trolls who don’t care about ruining other people’s lives.

Fun and games

The same goes for Instagram, where ‘content creators’ are so obsessed with their fifteen minutes of fame that they’re willing to undergo dangerous surgery to look the part, never mind that the flashy lifestyles and perfect optics they create are often fake.

Finally, there’s TikTok, which is less about relaxing and reminiscing and more about young people getting famous from cultural appropriation, at least until it all falls apart and the cycle of worry starts over again.

Tech savvy

Because technology can be used for good or for bad, you have to be mindful that social media has real risks. That’s why you should manage your time on these platforms, lest you wind up joining a positive community that turns into a hateful group or online cult.

The same applies to consuming news. Always check your sources (including newsletters, documentaries, and podcasts) to make sure they’re accurate, transparent, and up-to-date. Then use your critical thinking skills to separate what’s real from what’s not, much like Don DeLillo writes in White Noise (also available on Audible):

Facts threaten our happiness and security. The deeper we delve into the nature of things, the looser our structure may seem to become.

The truth will set you free.

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