The Great Divide
While internet provides a level playing field, and the impression we are all “global citizens”, the reality has been far from equal nor global. Internet creates the illusion that space and time is irrelevant, and affords us the luxury to view ourselves from a wider perspective, to think of ourselves as a singular species, liberated from categories such as nationalities, race and gender. At the same time, in reality, border laws are getting more draconian, inequality in wealth and ideological beliefs are widening. The internet creates the appearance of walls breaking, allowing connections, interrelation, but reality has continued to work against this, and tell us otherwise.
There has been countless revolutions throughout global history which has changed the structure and balance of power, from the control of the few to the masses, from absolute monarchies to constitutional states, from colonial rule to independent states,from racial segregation to coexistence. Almost all revolutions are specific to a particular cause, be it freedom, equal rights or democracy, and all required people coming together on the streets and physically risking their lives for a cause. Then came the Internet Revolution, which allowed the creation of a new reality, giving people the ability to transcend the limitation within their physical space, forming potentially a new sociological structure. More complex community networks were being formed which stretched across cities, nations and oceans. The “global village”, was coined, and people started living it daily through continual status updates, tweets, photo & video uploads. We became globally aware, globally responsible, and with that we required and demanded global social change and justice. Now we weren’t just fighting for our rights on the neighborhood turf, or nationally set boundaries, but we had to do it, on a global scale, a digital scale, an infinite scale.
The fast pace of technology adoptation required to be part of this social structure, meant generation after generation, had become obsolete at a faster pace. Not only that, but we were also living longer, meaning, “generational groupings” were multiplying at a faster pace, and they were becoming more narrow and confined, whilst the gap between each group were becoming wider and wider.From Silent Generation, Baby boomers, Generation X’ers, Y’ers, Millennials, to New Silent, it seemed there was a necessity to create a new generation on a daily basis. You wake up hip and in-vogue, but by the time you are asleep, you are outdated and passe’. With internet revolution it may seem that all walls were breaking, but, we could see new walls were also being constructed everyday, and any social change that the Internet in its “idealized form”, seduced us with, became a figment of our imagined digitalscape rather than actuality. The internet has allowed us to imagine a broader concept of what constitutes as a peaceful, and empathetic society but the problem is that, we are only allowed to live in it for a short while, before we are rudely awaken by the next new technological advancement, and with it formulation of a new fashionable generation. By the time we come of age to actually realize and have the ability to do something about the concept we were allowed to imagine, in a more practical sense, we are told to move out of the way, and made redundant, creating more resentment and animosity between each subsequent generation. This was clearly evident during the latest General Election in UK 2015, when the Conservative Party won, leaving the social network site Facebook, “Gobsmacked”(30 – 39 yrs), Twitter #ShockedGEResult” (20 – 29 yrs), SnapChat “#censored” (12 – 19yrs), and people on the streets, “Highly Amused” (40 – 69 yrs).