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A philanthropic spirit encompassed with an entrepreneurial mind, I am passionate about technology and the things technology can help people to achieve.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Mind Control: Is Twitter Altering Reality??

In today’s world it is of necessity for one to question things beyond what they seem to be. Taking the information from any source as being a given can have fatal consequences. My belief is there is a few who want to profit and ride on the ignorance of many. It is incumbent upon every human on the face of the earth to be as inquisitive as possible for the benefit of everyone or else we will all perish. The bible clearly states, “My people perish because of the lack of knowledge”. Note that it does not say from the absence of knowledge.

Monday 11th of October 2011 was just one of those days, wake up, read the headlines on lamp posts and try to absorb all this and how it relates to my state of affairs. One read “America could escape recession”. It got me wondering; have they (recessions) not been happening often lately. Has the economic cycle reduced by that much a margin to keep us on our toes every 2 or so years? I wrestled this thought and shoved it somewhere at the back of my mind and store it to be retrieved at a later date perhaps be put down as a blog.

But one single event that changed my day was when my Facebook stopped updating the news feeds, it had been an hour so I logged out and back in but could not manage beyond the authentication page. It was then that it hit me

, I had lost all connectivity to my BlackBerry Service (BIS), I quickly checked with my trusted sources such as colleagues and they were experiencing the same problem, I went on to Twitter to verify with my service provider Vodacom and a few experts like Joey Sanders and BlackBerryhelp. It was confirmed the service was down for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) though it was said to be with “some” users. Throughout the day I was checking on the micro-blogging site Twitter for feeds and progress being made with resolving the problem. I checked on trends within South Africa to pull out uniform tweets hoping to find vital information. However to my surprise there was no #BlackBerry, #RIM or #BIS trending, I thought it was odd. I went on to pull worldwide data and the best I could find was #BB which I saw had mixed tweets, some for Big Brother UK and some for BlackBerry.

My first reaction to this was “okay so BlackBerry does not want this put on the map” or it was a move to hide the reality of the situation. EMEA region is big enough to create enough tweets for a world-wide trend. Alternatively I know in South Africa a lot of people use BlackBerry so it was a given that the issue would trend but it didn’t. Even on the morning of 11th October when service was restored. But I remember when iPhone 4S was launched it did trend in South Africa and worldwide, I have not seen that many iPhones in South Africa as compared to BlackBerries. On another level I looked at Justin Bieber or Lady Gaga who always trend. Bieber has 13 million followers while Lady Gaga has 14 million. Now does it mean that the EMEA region has less than say 15 million BlackBerry users? (Media puts it that there are about 70 million BlackBerry users). As connectivity was not there one might argue users did not tweet but I was looking at the feeds on Twitter, every minute there were multiple tweets regarding BlackBerry issue and the iPhone users also tweeted about the issue albeit in jest. My conclusion, there was enough traffic to cause a local and worldwide trend but this did not happen.

Soon my thoughts wandered onto Twitter itself; how something becomes a trending topic. Come to think of it I do not remember BlackBerry or Samsung ever trending. But iPhone trends with ease, worldwide I can understand for the many users in North America but locally (South Africa) as well it did,which baffled me because of the relatively low user base. I quickly came to conclusion:

1.     Twitter trends could be manipulated and not driven by what we feed into the micro-blog.

2.     Twitter filters certain names, brands or people from its qualifying trend topics.

3.     Twitter is gaining financially to influence the perception of its users on particular brands or users.

4.     Brands pay Twitter to trend.

These outcomes were horrific to ponder. Every time I would look on Twitter to see what is happening and which is the most happening brands or people making news. I had become dependent on Twitter for vital information, not any more. I would not want to have my mind conditioned in a particular line of thinking; I shudder to become a zombie gulping everything that comes of the micro-blogging site. I want to retain my unique observation and make sound judgments. Twitter according to me is pre-set with information and some is filtered out and discarded. I believe this is the reason why someone can say “Nelson Mandela is dead” and it becomes a trending topic on Twitter, it’s all pre-set in their servers I am sure. I might be wrong with my conclusions but I believe relying on Twitter for current information is an exercise in futility unless one does not mind having their mind altered in a certain way, to follow certain celebs, to think certain brands are what everyone wants. I certainly want to retain my freedom of thought so I will continue pose questions in my mind. If I lose the battle to think independently then I would rather be dead. We live in scary times and the battle to stay different and sane is reaching a crescendo.

Assisted reality is the new order and like Proles in George Orwell’s 1984, most of us no longer understand that there is a form of exploitation going on in the world today. Which one are you? Sane or Prole with a bonus of a Troll.

NB: On the 11th of October BlackBerry service experienced another outage, I went to Twitter to look for concrete evidence by comparing trends, I searched for Tweets about #nicknamesforbreasts vs #BlackBerry in 2 browser tabs, the #nicknamesforbreasts was a top trending topic at the time. Within 20 minutes #nicknamesforbreasts had 144 tweets, BlackBerry had 419 but the reality is BlackBerry did not trend. The writing is on the wall, Twitter trends are manipulated to influence the people.

1 comment:

  1. I think this is a serious thing to think about. If we aren't constantly living in the real world then social media can take over. I sometimes get lost in the realty market online and get way out of my price range.

    Aaron Carter | http://www.nevasca.com