Creative destruction has been at the heart of Capitalism for a long time. Technology and innovation destroy existing world orders and create new ones.
The story is old.
The story is celebrated.
Recently, however, several technology trends are destroying without creating robust alternatives.
Media is a very good example.
Democracy needs independent, high quality journalism to present all points of view. But the Media industry has been decimated by Google and Facebook, and no compelling alternative has taken its place.
News outlets hardly have budgets to do quality investigative journalism. The few remaining ones are struggling financially. Citizen journalism has taken its place. Content marketing has taken its place. But, are these adequate alternatives?
Add to that the whole issue of Facebook’s algorithm playing the role of curator of what we read. We see what Facebook shows us. We see articles that we want to see, missing points of view that are likely to be expansive.
And then, add to that the issue of fake news that can be amplified dramatically without the filter of truth. Satirical pieces like The Borowitz Report from The New Yorker, due to lack of context, gets interpreted as news, not satire.
Artificial Intelligence is another very good example. Automation is about to reshape the human civilization as a nonworking society sustained on large-scale welfare – Universal Basic Income, to be precise.
Medical Science is also an interesting one. Expanding longevity while people are becoming economically unviable won’t contribute to desirable outcomes.
Are we over engineering society?
Just because we can, does it mean we should?
Photo credit: Steve Jurvetson/Flickr.com.
This segment is a part in the series : The Future