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The Scariest Thing I Have Ever Seen

Last night I saw the scariest thing I have ever seen - in my life - period.

I watched the new Netflix documentary The Social Dilemma - an incredible take on the dangers that are arising from the rapidly increasing powers of AI (Artificial Intelligence) in social medial technology. This has moved some social media users to close their accounts.

IndieWire has called it “possibly the single most lucid, succinct, and profoundly terrifying analysis of social media ever created.”

The Social Dilemma explores how the most popular social media products work on a business model of tracking users’ behavior in order to sell targeted ads and induce addiction in a vicious cycle.

The film touches on many issues, including how tech companies have influenced elections, ethnic violence, and rates of depression and suicide.  I was especially moved about the discussion of the impact on younger people - specifically middle-schoolers - and the data tying increased suicide rates to the influence of social media.

The warnings are dire. In the film, technology pioneer Jaron Lanier warns, “If we go down the status quo for, let’s say, another 20 years, we probably destroy our civilization through willful ignorance.”

The Social Dilemma ends with interviewees encouraging viewers to “change the conversation” around technology.

I think this documentary is well-worth watching. You can read more about it and see the trailer here:

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