Google’s homepage wishing me Happy Birthday looked cute but felt creepy. Like a birthday card from your dentist who means well, but reminds you of drills and scraping. I tried to shake off this foreboding Google feeling, with no success.
Then I came across an interview with Julian Assange where he shares the underbelly of Google as a type of private National Security Agency behemoth.
Google is an emerging state within a state. It’s a type of private National Security Agency,” he says. “It’s in the business of collecting as much data around the world as possible, about as many people and places as it can. It stores and indexes this data, builds profiles of people and sells them to advertisers. Spying is its business model. But as the Edward Snowden revelations make clear, it’s also a target and ally of the National Security Agency.”
Times have changed since the most prolific spy network was the Roman Catholic Church with its rank and file priests filled with endless confessions that continuously dropped into their data collection plate. Wars and destruction were launched with this information. The Roman Catholic Church is religious and political.
Assange reminds us that Google is private and political. It is an advanced player in the new religion of Singularity with its promises of immortality, artificial intelligence and a superhuman body. With Google, you have command and control from your own social media, blog or website as long as you follow their dogma and doctrine.
Google is gobbling up innovations from companies eager for a buy out. They are selling information to the highest bidder, eager for a buy in.
Where does that leave us–the congregation of devout believers of salvation and singularity? We who log on everyday and share our data. Google is our ritual, just like our ancestors attended Mass every morning and confessed when something really nasty occurred in their lives. Like Snapchat, they believed the information shared in the confessional just disappeared. Surely it was never stored!
Off the Hook
Then one day some of us woke up. And the religious spy network began to crumble. Like cascading stones of a cathedral, it is still standing, but greatly impaired.
One day some of us will wake up to the net that Google and other systems have created to capture. But it will take time because…well…we like nets.
How do we find a way out of the net that satiates our endless need to search and showcase? How do we find a way out of the net that satiates our endless need to share our dramas and eavesdrop on others? How do we find a way out of the net that feels like home with cozy characters and dancing digitals?
Capture and Release
Assange reminds us that not all countries are search-engined by Google, nor does Google have control over the Dark Net, which is far more creepy than Google singing Happy Birthday. If there is a Dark Net, could there be a Light Net?
Or could we release our propensity to always be “casting a net”… innate fishers of men that we are.
Release and Reformation
What an interesting phenomenon: We humans allow ourselves to be scooped up by the net and then tear apart its seams to find freedom. This net phenomenon may be related to our brain having a neural net and living in a body teaming with networks.
Assange reminds us, if there is a net it has holes and through the holes there is freedom. Neural plasticity reminds us, if there is a net it can reform. Information technology reminds us that all nets are energy which can form a wave, collapse or dissipate.
As Exoconscious, we are fish viewing our ocean. We can swim into off-planet waters, create a shell (craft), or school with extraterrestrial beings, but we remain in an ocean of consciousness. Maybe for “eternity”. Maybe for “now”. (Those states may all be the same, different or parallel, but it’s not time for that question.)