Social media guru avoids all social media, for good reason

From Maureen Dowd at New York Times:

Mr. Lanier is one of the few prophets who admits that the spawn of Silicon Valley could become evil, but he tries to stay on the sunny side. It helps that he avoids all social media.

“The popular ones are designed for behavior modification,” he says, wearing his usual black T-shirt and black pants. “It’s like, why would you go sign up for an evil hypnotist who’s explicitly saying that his whole purpose is to get you to do things that people have paid him to get you to do, but he won’t tell you who they are?”

At this moment when dark clouds loom over Silicon Valley, Mr. Lanier is able to talk about the Lords of the Cloud with affection yet candor, as he worries that these tech gods creating new worlds may be getting “high on their own supply.”

“This is such a scary time, isn’t it?” he says, in his sweet, breathy voice. “I mean, it is for me. I had always feared we would create this social-manipulation technology out of computers.”More.

Reality check: The guy who invented knives Way Back When might have been like ths too. And knives can do evil as well as good. The solution is to get the technology away from him and use it for our own good, not necessarily his.

See also: Instapundit asks, why can’t the ruling class do its job? It would all work better in a society where those outside the out-of-touch ruling class do not have rights. Expect attacks on a variety of civil liberties in the name of social justice.

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