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Whilst I agree that the immediacy of modern media can make the problems worse, it doesn’t cause them.

Deep within each of us is that old monkey brain, telling us we’re not safe unless we belong to a tribe. And once we belong to a tribe, then anyone who’s not of that tribe becomes a threat. The compulsion is so strong that if we’re not given tribes to belong to, we’ll invent them.

Over millennia, there’s been a great deal said about how this tendency is exploited by those seeking power. How religious, political, and military leaders can convince us to murder each other in the millions for no obvious reason.

But the problem is not the leaders. They’re just exploiting an obvious advantage. The problem is our willingness to be followers. Whenever we say “I am a Christian”, “I am French”, “I am a Democrat”, or “I support the Boston Red Sox”, we align ouselves with a tribe, and we become not only part of the problem, we become the cause of the problem. Without followers, dangerous leaders would just wither and blow away in the wind.

Sadly, I don’t see a solution. It’s not a question of maturity - it’s something inherent in our nature, and our evolutionary heritage. We need to belong to a group - and the group needs to be defined by others who are not in that group.


It absolutely is. You’re just thinking about a particular subset of social media. Don’t know if there’s an actual term for it, but I guess “social mass-media” would fit the bill.


I have stuck with twitter because I can set it to follow a #. In this case NMS. Then I am very, very choosy about who I follow. Most of them are NMS exclusive. I do follow a couple of other official accounts for things that interest me. So, for the most part, I get NMS related tweets in my feed.
My feed went haywire for a time. A lot of people left. But I found other NMS content creators and slowly my feed balanced back out. So, I have a twitter existence that I am satisfied with. But that is because I keep tight control on it. As long as I can focus on the # I want and I am choosy about who I follow, it is a nice place to be.
Are there more ads in my feed? Yes. But, I have to say the products being shown are actually quite unique and very interesting. I do not mind them being there.
So for all those tweeters who are angry and upset, I say, tighten your parameters.
I will stick with twitter as long as other NMS tweeters stick with it because that is why I am there.


I completely agree with what you wrote. And there is no immediate solution (except drastic ones like AI biosync or something).
However, in my eyes, the solution is education, which leads to the evolution of both the human individual and societies. Gradual but consistent. And I’m not talking about system-led education, because that can be called indocrination and one of the reasons for the current state of affairs.
And this education can be run by people LIKE YOU who write posts LIKE THIS to expand awareness of masses.
Even on twitter :grin:


Flattering though your comment is, any insight I have to offer is hardly new. It’s been better said by others.

But the really scary thing is that I’ve just written about the dangers of our tendency to be followers - to which, you suggest that I seek followers. You see the problem?


I think that’s a fundamentally flawed conclusion. The problem is situated much deeper than mere knowledge, or even understanding. I have seen enough highly educated people denying reality as soon as it’s uncomfortable to them. I have however seen many highly educated people propose this solution, which to me is just an indicator that highly educated people seem to suffer similar blindspots.
Even raw intelligence has that issue and is not a solution.
The only solution I can see is self-responsibility, reflection and what I’ve come to call “will to truth” (some romantics call it “a love for truth”, but really, there’s not much to love about most important truths…).

The issue is, when it comes to morals, it is my experience that the actually important truths are all entirely subjective. What are your motivators, what drives you, why do you do the things you do, believe the things you believe, who are you anyways? Every individual is literally the only person that can ascertain those truths. Somebody else can help you ascertain them, but nobody can actually find them for sure if you don’t want them to.
And if you lie about them to yourself, they’re gone. They’re not like the earth moving around the sun, a fact that all the machinations of the catholic church couldn’t suppress for very long, because everybody with a telescope could just look at it and see that it’s in fact true. The subjective truths can be, and often are, lost irrecoverably. But when it comes to moral behaviour, they’re the most important. Also the most uncomfortable ones. Which is why most people just don’t believe them and keep lying to themselves about themselves, getting into horrifying psychological labyrinths where simple inputs can have the weirdest (and most horrifying) outputs.

And the thing is, I don’t think we can change that. I don’t believe we can change the fundamental mechanism of the brain that puts safety (physical or psychological) over morality. In short, I do not believe there is a solution.


It was never my suggestion, just your interpretation that being on twitter involves looking for followers. I was only writing about spreading awareness. Admittedly, a large number of followers certainly helps in this :grinning: However, in this case, I think we’ll agree it’s about setting your own priorities.
‘The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence.’


highly educated people denying reality as soon as it’s uncomfortable to them

which you refer to can at best be described as highly indoctrinated xD
Main function of public so called ‘education’ is to produce docile & semi-inteligent workers accepting without question the ‘truths’ presented to them.
REAL education is about questioning things.
Thats why i fully agree that ‘will to truth’ is essential and often is very, very uncomfortable. Which is a real problem, because people prefer sweeter lies than bitter truths.
But sometimes like you wrote “Somebody else can help you ascertain them” and that’s what I mean.
If Galileo or Copernicus did not proclaim their truths and share it to the masses who knows how history would have turned out.
We can’t change mechanism of the brain coded in our DNA (can’t we?) but this lead to eternal question. Can we rise beyond the recorded animal impulses ? Can we be humanimals or humans ?
I think that proper & real education could change situation maybe in the perspective of generations, but it is certainly possible, imo.
But as they say, it won’t start by itself :grinning:


Funny how he only discusses the scary parts of data scraping and not the actual common and most likely reasons. This guys playbook is very funny too, oooh scary governments, ooooh.

My friend works for a movie studio in Israel and his job is to literally write python scripts to scrape data from all social media sites, to then algorithmically produce the perfect script or movie idea to sell to studios or if they’ve got a bunch of scripts, to decide which to push to studios for green lighting.

Dude lumped China and Porn companies in the same sentence XD I’ve never seen a more transparent fear mongerer.

I hear they also use the data to allow your kids to hold rainbow parties.

No, we’re just Animals. Earth Animals! No different from the other Earth Animals. Our special ability is encoding information into imagery to pass on learned knowledge after we have passed. That is it. We’re still emotional, need driven beings like the other land amimamuls :3


I would take that idea a little further. Our special ability is to communicate abstract ideas. We can imagine something that hasn’t happened yet, and tell others about it.

It used to be thought that only humans used tools - that turned out to be wrong. At one time people thought only humans had language - and that, too was incorrect. In the past, it was a general belief that only humans were capable of abstract reasoning - and that was also an error.

But only humans were able to say “If we dig a big pit at the end of this canyon, and if you lot wait at the top with big rocks and sharp sticks, then we set fire to the brushwood at the other end of the canyon, we can catch ourselves a MAMMOTH!!”

Only humans can do this.


There’s a language issue here, I think. The problem is that the english word “education” can mean different things. In german, there are two words that both get translated with “education”. One is “Bildung”, which focuses on instilling knowledge, and is the domain of schools. The other one is “Erziehung”, which focuses on behaviour and is the domain of the parents.
By what you say, you seem to be talking about “Erziehung”, which I agree can help with the issue. In your first post, I was mostly thinking of “Bildung”, which in my experience is not a prerequisite for self-honesty and self-responsibility (which is ultimately what we’re talking about, let’s face it).

But not even “Erziehung” is a guarantor. The problem at the heart of the issue is that the truth often hurts, and lying to yourself and feeling better is a really easy thing to do. You can teach a kid that it’s important to be honest about themselves. But in the end you cannot directly influence their willingness or capability of enduring the discomfort and frequent insecurity that comes with it.

Add on top of that that taking the easy way out has evident, measurable economic advantages, and you’re faced with a hopeless situation if you think about applying this on a large scale. The cultural changes required to make it actually rewarding (and in some cases even to make it socially acceptable in the first place) are mindboggling. That’s why I don’t believe we can solve this one. But I am honest enough to myself to be aware that I’m quite the pessimist and often see things darker than they actually are, so who knows…

There’s nothing wrong with being emotional, really. Emotions are an extremely important feedback layer. If we’d only go on logic (or the sorry emulation of it that our brains can manage), we’d be screwed completely…


Totally agree. Reddit, Atlas CSD, and similar discussion media are ways we interact socially. That makes them social media.

Sadly, social media bullies exhibit anti-social behavior. That, coupled with nation state attacks on a society, people’s gullibility, and the desire to reinforce held beliefs degrades the value of social media.

I have restricted my use of social media to the few related to No Man’s Sky. Even then, it was sad to see the anti-social behavior of flamers on the game’s launch. Some didn’t even own the game.

Some folks relish spewing hate and the ensuing online “fights,.”


Well, bullies always do. Social media do provide the challenge that it’s somewhat more difficult to punch them on the nose, making them somewhat bolder, though.


Indeed, thats why i conveyed no personal opinion in my post, but no less interesting all the same.

A car can be used to take your gran to church and also bulldose a crowd. If one of those happens its not newsworthy, although the other certainly would be.


I’m finding this discussion fascinating and a little heartwarming. It is always lovely to me to see people sharing that they care about these issues.

On e of the aspects re: monkey brain holding back our species from maturing (and somewhere in there is the belief that certain behaviours are more mature than others --which we may not all agree on…), I would like to mention the strides being made in the area of neuroscience. They seem to me to be very hopeful (as I am one who wishes to live in a peaceful creative society)

For example, people used to believe the brain was a lump of grey matter incapable of growing new cells. Now we know about neuroplasticity. We have also learned that that viewing or creating art for apprx 20 minutes daily stimulates the brain to drastically lower cortisone levels.

My own fear is that some unscrupulous person(s) could use this newish technology against others, but so far my hopes are definitely raised.

Change, evolution of sorts, is a necessary constant. But like the old lightbulb joke: One really must want to change.


I love how a post about some changes at twitter has turned in to a discussion on the human condition <3


My challenge : More gray matter seeps into my hair daily!


Well after all, it is “social” media :crazy_face:


I consider a thread that doesn’t drift wildly off-topic a failure. Who wants to have a conversation about just one thing?


Oh I agree Tribalism is a massive problem, and inherent in our biological nature. But I would argue modern media making the problem worse is a bigger long term problem.

It all comes back to do you believe people are naturally good, or bad. I would argue must people learn to be good. I don’t believe we are born inherently good. And I think learned behavior as we grow is a real thing and influenced by family, school, social activities and internet, We cannot erase our biological nature, but we can influence choice. And choice can be passed on generation after generation.
If we ever to rise above our nature we have to choose to do it. It will never just happen. Because if we give in to our base natures, Humanity is screwed. Because humans want some awful stuff if you would allow them.