Technology creates immense advantages, as well as immense handicaps.
Any social, economic, political environment that does not obey any rules leaves ample space for speculation and misuse. One is the social media, made possible via technology, and more generally, the internet. With an uncontrolled, and likely, uncontrollable web and social media, it is very much up to each of us how to use and what to make out of it.
There are many facets to this matter; I would like to discuss only one: The power it has to shape collective thought and behaviour.
As Umberto Eco wrote, internet has given the right of speech to legions of imbeciles. Many of whom become so-called “influencers”. It is extremely easy to notice that, there is no need for evidence.
This is clearly a perversion of democracy and it is highly risky, considering that not few politicians, whose ideas’ quality are not at all far from those of the above mentioned legions, make avid use of social media. Adding to this the general, and in some countries, alarming, weakening of the quality of education, the freedom to use technology as one likes, can potentially shape collective thought in undesirable ways. It is already happening.
In conclusion: in my view technology, or better, the way it is being used, so far has contributed to weaken, not strengthen, democracy in Europe.
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