New Media – The Tentacles Of Technology #edcmooc

New Media

Humanity in the tentacles of technology, A totally dystopian representation of a world that is on the mercy of technology, in my view. This video is quite similar to the Bendito Machine, or perhaps, can even be called a logical sequel to it, following the dystopian view-pint. While Bendito Machine depicts man’s quest for newer and better technology, New Media, perhaps, attempts to showcase the eventual outcomes of being slaves to technology. It depicts a world that is overrun by it, as the tentacles of technology threaten to grip everything in sight.

A bit exaggerated, perhaps. Our world is what WE make of it. It is all about “Agency”, really – the ability of individuals to make free choices. As in the case of every aspect of life, we do have choices. The idea is to choose responsibly. And make no mistake – everything that we do is a conscious choice. WE decide whether we want to become slaves to technology and let our lives be controlled by it. OR we can choose pro-actively and decide what aspects of technology we want to use.

Choosing responsibly also means that we can harness technology in any way that WE wish to. We can choose to use it in a way that improves the way we do things, We can choose to use it to make a difference and improve learning. We can choose to use it to spread awareness. There is ALWAYS a choice, and we can also choose not to become slaves.

To support my point, I would like to cite some excerpts from this article that appears on the Huffington Post:

The way we work just isn’t working. Perhaps nobody knows this better than Tony Schwartz, CEO of The Energy Project and author of Be Excellent At Anything, who has built his career around transforming the way we live, work and use our energy.

In our “culture of distraction,” many of us live and work with divided attention and depleted energy resources, largely thanks to the unrelenting siren song of technology and social media.

It’s no secret that 24/7 connectivity and constant digital distractions are taking a toll on our well-being — excessive reliance on technology has been shown to have detrimental effects on productivity, focus, sleep quality and mood, among other negative health impacts. So how do we use technology in a way that won’t drive us crazy? Schwartz says that taking deliberate breaks from your devices is the only answer.

“These forms of technology are as addictive as crack. Period. If you expose yourself to them continuously, they will pull you in the way a drug would –- continuously, even when you know it’s not serving you well,” he says. “If that’s the case, you’ve got to move in and out of exposing yourself to them.”

Keep technological temptations away when you find yourself getting too distracted and constantly drawn in to work emails — or as Schwartz puts it: “If you’re trying to lose weight, don’t have cupcakes in the fridge.”

And to wrap up, here is a short video that I came across on YouTube.

With that, I rest my case.

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  1. Good points about agency – recognising our agency in relation to a film like this creates a positive feeling. And you’re following up with warnings about exercising that agency. I wonder whether your WE means as individuals or society – how do we cope with agency at scale?

    I enjoyed the short video and it made me think how I’d have loved to have done something like that when I was at school, though of course it would have been unimaginable so long ago. The technology that has allowed them to make the video is perhaps not the same as the technology that they are warning us about, although there may be an overlap. It’s got me thinking! Thank you.

    • Thank you, Christine, for your views and your comment. First off, I think WE here would include individuals as well as society. The society is made up of US as individuals, and each one is capable of contributing. If each of us make the right choice, we contribute in some way to the society.

      But as you also rightly pointed out, coping with agency at scale is a herculean task. All one can do to contribute is to do their bit.

      And I also agree with you that the technology that allowed the video to be made was not available in our school days, and surely there may be some overlap between the one used to produce it and the one we are being warned against. But that, I guess, is the case with all technology. How we use it, and how much we use it, is what makes the difference, isn’t it?

  2. I like the way you support your arguments with quotes from other sources round up your post with another video, which goes beyond the course material. And it was also nice to know that somebody else interprests the message of “New Media” in the same way as I did: I also felt like “New Media” was a logical continuation of “Bendito Machine III”. And your thoughts on the humans’ agency are very close to those I had when working on “Thursday”. It’s great to share ideas with people of the same mind – that feels like my opinion is being supported. 🙂

    • Thanks once again, Liliya. It is certainly nice to hear the views of like-minded people.In fact, I strongly believe that human agency has a major role to play in how we treat technology, and yes, I did feel that this would be the logical sequel to Bendito Machine.

      Oh, by the way, I clicked on your name because I wanted to read your posts as well, but it took me to a blog that is in Italian.. am afraid I don’t know any Italian 🙁

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