For several years, I have been advocating that everyone in the entire world get off of social media in general, and delete their Facebook account in particular.
Now, the very people who created these digital monsters are joining me.
The Netflix documentary The Social Dilemma is now available to watch, and I strongly recommend that everyone watch it…and if you have children, watch it with them.
While I’m not a fan of ‘reenactments’ in documentary films, I sat through these segments in The Social Dilemma because I found the on-camera interviews with the tech professionals so compelling.
By ‘tech professionals’, I mean people like the guy who invented the Like Button on Facebook, the guy who’s job it was to monetize these platforms, the women who understand intimately the manipulative powers of these networks, and the people (these very same people) who–as parents–won’t allow their own children to have an account on these same networks.
It is a sobering, even terrifying testament to the dangers of social media. (And yes, I’m aware of all the good that this technology has done in connecting people globally, but we’ve reached a point where we have to retreat, regroup, regulate, and reinvent our relationship with social media.)
If you’ve ever wondered why people are carrying automatic weapons in the street and why you can’t have a civil conversation about politics with your brother-in-law, this film is for you. If you’re wondering why some people seem to be living in an alternate reality (complete with alternate facts), this film is for you. If you’re wondering whether or not our democracy is going to survive this moment in time, this is the film for you.
If you’re like me, and you already know why so many alleged adults are acting like high-schoolers who’ve had one too many Red Bulls, then this will only confirm your suspicions.
Still, you can watch, nod in knowing agreement, and then recommend all of your friends watch it.
This is what I’ve done.
As a country, we may have to fall flat on our face and stumble to our feet with a bloody nose before we disconnect from social media and reconnect with our fellow Americans. (Even–and especially–with the ones with whom we disagree.)
Perhaps, though, if we watch The Social Dilemma and spread the word, we can avoid that outcome.