Today I will share a personal story of how I personally tried to live off the online grid for 4 years.
Social media was brand new when I went to high school. In fact I’d never heard of MySpace, Facebook or YouTube until I moved to the USA. I remember well the 1st time someone told me about Facebook and how it worked. At the time I thought it sounded absolutely tragic that anyone would spend time online sending out friend requests and liking people’s pictures rather than interacting with people in the real world. I never thought that this concept would take off. I also thought that the guy who introduced me to all of this was a total loser.
Fast forward a year or two and it became obvious that technology had forever changed human interactions. Privacy was dead. Nobody could be trusted. People assumed that they already knew you after checking out whatever online content. Everyone were seemingly living double lives. Socially awkward people all of a sudden had fans and followers. It was weird. To me however it was clear that I didn’t want to be a part of any of this so I did the only sensible thing: deleted my email, removed an uninteresting personal MySpace profile (only created due to everyone else having one), and literally threw my flip-phone in the trash. I also realised that I had to throw something else in the trash: my connections. The only way to live off the grid was to minimise real-life, real-world interactions.
For 4 years I managed to be invisible. If it hadn’t been for my artist profile I wouldn’t have existed at all. It was a nice thing in many ways to be a Ninja, even though industry people regularly complained that they couldn’t get a hold of me. My reasoning was simple: we live in an interconnected world, if you want to call me, or get in touch with me you can simply call someone in my band, one of my siblings, or my management and you’ll find me. If I need you I can just borrow someone’s phone, or use a pay phone.
Of course it was humorous when I was in a band with a bass player who didn’t have a cellphone either. It was actually kind of funny. But in most instances my argument was valid. Now and then an old friend would hear from me via the Skype or Facebook account of someone else.
However, this type of 007 behaviour won’t last forever. All you need for the Ninja operation to be compromised is: a guy you fancy, loneliness becoming detrimental to your general well-being, or a desire for “private” conversations. Then the whole Ninja operation will implode.
In late 2012 I finally got myself a private Facebook account under a fake name. What happened afterwards is actually what’s interesting because the following year I met up with old friends.
After many years of my artist image being carefully curated I was all of a sudden tagged in a retarded picture. The sort of a photo that is funny when you’re hanging out with friends, but not exactly something that you would post on LinkedIn or an official artist page. Then I was tagged as “checked in” when I went to have lunch with a bunch of female friends. The full name and location of the restaurant revealed, and also everyone who was present. Then I met up with a very old friend from Italy who wanted a selfie with the two of us together. The picture caught fire on her personal account since all of these Italians I used to know once all of a sudden saw a picture of their long, lost Norwegian friend. Make-up less me being tagged in pictures, me officially checking in here and there, and God only knows what else, was being logged into Facebook by other people. Me catching up with friends, chatting about what had happened since last time was being logged into Facebook, all of a sudden I was logging things publicly into my Facebook and the snowball started rolling from there.
My reason for sharing this is that it shows how blended the real world and the digital world has become, and that it is impossible to have any sort of social life without becoming embedded into the world of social media.
What this also means is that you can refrain from having an online presence while still leaving a digital footprint if others write about you, and “talk” about you online. How other people describe you can now serve to create some sort of a profile, and this can then again be used to judge you, or make assumptions about you based on true observations, heresy, and anything in between.
All of this is relevant because it opens up for the creation of an inescapable social credit system.
Yesterday I left Twitter, last year I left Patreon, few paid much attention to my Patreon exodus, but me posting about leaving Twitter on Instagram resulted in plenty of comments and “reactions.”
A great deal of the comments were supportive, a few were not since people assumed that I left because of Adolf-Stalin-Trump. I guess there is truth to the saying “hatred makes you blind.” Those who are fixated on Adolf-Stalin-Trump fail to perceive anything besides Adolf-Stalin-Trump. And anything that can in any way look like an endorsement of Adolf-Stalin-Trump will result in a meltdown or total hysteria. It’s quite incredible really.
The social media giants, activists and governments all seek to police both real-world and digital speech. Patreon deplatformed creative individuals due to statements that these individuals made outside of Patreon’s platform. Ages ago I secured my handle on all alternative social media networks, but all of these platforms have routinely been under attack. They’ve been removed, they’ve been in the receiving end of cyberattacks, you name it, because it’s not about policing your behaviour on one specific platform. It’s about policing the internet to determine who gets to have influence, money, and a life. Who gets to be huge and who doesn’t. Who gets to have a future. Through threats these people hope that they can forcefully impose compliance, even if what they impose goes against your own long-term survival as an individual, or as the member of a Nation. Even if their arguments are flawed and lack logic. Because it is not about what is true or what enhances your survival. Is about mindless ideology and the celebration of mind numbing compliance, even if what you’re supposed to kneel to is beyond moronic. If the new official gate keepers online aren’t interested in policing you far and wide, then people would be removed due to breaching whatever policies on whatever platform, they wouldn’t be punished for whatever behaviour outside of whatever platform.
An argument that some critics come up with is that Twitter is a private company and therefore they can do whatever they want. This is an ignorant argument however, because these social media companies want to pose as public utility companies when that suits their interests and then revert to being private companies once they get sued. What are these companies really? They don’t know and they don’t necessarily want to define that too much, due to potential liability.
My outrage has to do with the consequences that all of this will have long-term for those active in the creative professions. If you don’t deserve to get published due to online wrong-think, if you don’t deserve to get funding because you voted “wrong,” then there is no room for creativity in the future. Without freedom of expression there is no art. That is the core of my argument and why I am upset.
The political correctness brigade have also wrecked havoc within the hard sciences since Scientists who are involved with genetic research for example run the risk of destroying their lives by simply publishing truthful findings based on empirical data. Intelligent people have lost their tenure, financial backing, and have even had their names removed from research papers. It is utterly ridiculous and will serve to empower other Nations who will then be able to secure the most valuable members of our societies for themselves. The outrage displayed by the establishment when influencers and researchers jump ship and go to Russia or China tells you everything that you need to know.
We live in a global reality, and one of the perks is that if one community wants to exile you, you can always try to join another. Like a political refugee. This enrages establishment figures in the Anglo-sphere who wants to have the final say, and the final power on who gets to exist and who doesn’t. Didn’t these people champion globalism? Clearly they only did for as long as they thought that they could control everything.
As a matter of fact they cannot. One has to wonder how a potential post-American Empire, post-Anglo-sphere-reality, will look like when Indians want to prosecute Bill Gates for handicapping Indian children with his vaccines, the Egyptians want to prosecute Obama for destabilising their country, and all sorts of other American leaders and influencers are wanted for crimes against humanity. With the fall of the Anglo-sphere the grievances from Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, will be so innumerable that the Anglo-sphere cannot really afford to lose.
The untouchables will be paraded around like a replay of the Nuremberg trials, and all of those people who could always get away with everything will look so small. Minute in fact.
Yesterday I saw an article where it was suggested that Europe should have it’s “own internet.” Considering how blood thirsty the EU are when it comes to big-tech I assume that what awaits in the future is military independence from the USA and online independence from Silicon Valley.
While we wait for European alternatives we are still embedded into a totalitarian Anglo-sphere however, where a self-appointed elite wants to pass a verdict on you like bizarre Greek Gods.
Those who are blinded by their hatred for Adolf-Stalin-Trump however will not see how any past or current deplatforming can negatively affect them, since they are one of the “good guys.“ If you’ve thrown yourself onto whatever politically correct hashtags you must surely be safe, right?
The truth however is that these people will gladly walk into a gulag or a meat grinder for as long as the people who run it officially hate “the other side” of the political spectrum. They’ll see a Twitter exodus as an endorsement of Adolf-Stalin-Trump rather than an act of protest against the establishment of a system where only the bland and the featureless will survive.
Not even the people who’ve created these platforms and the tech will get to partake in a future that they‘ve helped build…
What activists and government figures ultimately want is complete control over the internet and all substantial platforms. They will keep on nagging and pushing until they themselves finally get full control of all aspects of systems that they are too stupid, and unimaginative to create on their own.