TO FEEL A MEMBER OF THE SOCIAL NETWORK GROUP
All this focus on social networks has been about money, i.e. ads, going public, but there’s been very little focus on what it feels like to be a member of society today.
There’s this illusion since every rapper has a posse and every person has a social media presence that we’ve all got a large group of friends, but the truth is many are still lonely.
This is not an anti-Internet screed. I believe technology has been a godsend for the isolated, you can pursue your interests without leaving the house. But as we journey into the teens, I’m completely flummoxed as to my place in society.
I am not one of the rich.
And forget about the lifestyle, I’m locked out of the loop regarding power. That’s what money brings today. The ability to influence, to change or reinforce the rules of the game. I.e. hedge funds’ perpetuation of the carried interest rule. The fact that many readers have no idea what I’m talking about is exactly the point.
Let’s just say the rich are getting richer. And there’s this fantasy that the poor can get rich too. Statistics tell us otherwise, the American Dream looms larger in Europe, but many have now become disenchanted. It’s not only college students who cannot get a job, but Gen-X’ers and baby boomers who are scratching their heads also. Media has been influenced by the 1%. Everybody’s a winner. So why am I not? And what can I do about it?
And despite all the so-called disruption, the reinforcement of old models is a roadblock I did not see coming. You were supposed to be truly innovative and then the democratic web would rise you above via virality and you’d be a newly-minted star. But the truth is with everybody attempting this, those backed by cash and publicity are triumphing, it’s even worse than it was in the nineties. Wannabes were excluded then, but there were more stars, and a middle class not on MTV. Today we’ve got a thin layer of superstars and then a plethora of unknowns.