Posted by: codecalla | April 13, 2013

Media and Technology

One of the things that I’ve become increasingly concerned about is how media and technology can spread bad ideas and emotions quickly.  In the past few years, people easily find others who agree with their perspectives, which can be a good thing, but it also can compound outmoded thinking and even criminal behavior.  I’m not advocating censorship, but education.  Most recently, in Ohio and California, and perhaps other places where we have not yet discovered, there have been two occasions where a sexual assault was videotaped/recorded, and then posted online for a free-for-all view.

How can technology facilitate this perception that 1) it’s okay to touch someone sexually if they have no idea you are doing it, or 2) it’s okay to record that action and then 3) share with the rest of the world to laugh at the person who is unaware?  People are ultimately to blame.  How are these young men being educated to believe it’s just fine to take advantage of someone, especially if you are in a group?  And even better if you record it.

This is a matter of education.  Rape is something that can wound someone long after the event, regardless of the manner in which it happened.  What’s more, to post something on the Internet is to socially humiliate, terrorize, and intimidate the victim.  It’s not funny.   I’ll say it again, It’s not funny.

Is this an example of modern sadistic tendencies?  Is it an example of a genuine lack of empathy for other people?  A lack of education?  Or did they know it was wrong, and didn’t care?

I am not a fan of defining rape in different methods, such as, “It wasn’t violent” so it’s not rape?  The violence is in the action of forcing yourself on another person, without regard to their wishes, and then the emotional violence of further humiliating them.  Further, the inclusion of social media, the humiliation can be unbearable, as one unfortunate young lady recently demonstrated by committing suicide.

There is a great potential to do good, be better people, and spread amazing ideas, but there is an equal opportunity to use technology to promote evil.

How do ideas spread?  How can we educate people to learn to do the right thing or to empathize with each other?  Technology can bring people together, but it can also dehumanize us.  I sincerely hope we can reflect on how we use technology, and how we educate.

This is a far more complex topic than I can write in one post, but it is concerning.  I hope that we think a little more before spreading anything that dehumanizes others.


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