George Orwell said: “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it”. I thought as I was growing up that the world would become a better place for everyone. Instead, social values are rapidly deteriorating and no one is making any real attempt to address the fears that are arising as technology is utilised more and more in every aspect of our lives.
Technology is constantly evolving and enhancing our lives and creating great opportunities, in so many ways. But here, I wanted to explore the darker side of how technology is being exploited, and how our youth are being pulled into this great maw of “must have, must see, can’t live without” manipulated by hyped up advertising and peer pressure, and the fact that everything now is maintained by technology. People cannot function without having the latest technology, for work, or school or simply for entertainment.
It seems some are so immersed in technology to really stop and think ‘Where is this actually leading?’. Our governments are too busy scoring points. Lawyers are too busy making money out of other people’s misery or misdeeds. Judges appear too concerned about their ‘image’ and want to seem lenient when, in my opinion, they should be stricter to care about the effects that are affecting the young.
With such rapid development and the increase of visually graphic content shown in our news, films, games and other entertainment, it appears great populations in our society are losing touch with reality. There is little or no control or censorship when it comes to what today’s young people see, and they are far more able than I to interact with the world online — not necessarily a positive.
I feel there is greater violence in games, and with that violence comes a greater thrill for those involved in playing them. It appears more people — not just our youth — are becoming obsessed with gaming and are blurring the lines between what is real and what is not. It has been noted that several of the shooters involved in mass shooting events in the United States were fanatical about violent video games. It concerns me that there are games available with graphic details inside them, such as how to mutilate a body; the glorification of murder; and a misogynist attitude towards women.
What are we hoping for when our children can grow up seeing murder and violence splashed so confrontingly across our television screens? When such imagery is displayed in a news telecast, one could argue that it is no longer able to be distinguished from the games they are being allowed to play.
I can’t recall a time when there has been such visual violence towards our fellow man. The presence of it has me concerned about how desensitised future generations are becoming.
There has always been horror and violence throughout history. The difference is that we now hear it in gruesome, sensationalised detail. Many stories of past atrocities have been ‘romanticised’, and the impact is muted by time — made more graphic when retold in a screen adaptation. Why?
I’ve watched this progression since television was introduced in Australia. I feel human behaviour is changing and it is not for the better.
I remember a society that was the support system for family and friends, a genuine community. Today people talk of their isolation, despite being surrounded by people. They don’t notice what is going on around them because they are too busy looking at the tiny screens in the palm of their hand. There is so much information available we are becoming overloaded. It is becoming more difficult to determine the difference between fact and fiction. It is this aspect of technology that concerns me, and should perhaps concern you too.
Yes, it is a part of our lives and as someone wrote recently, it has been responsible for so many positives — especially in the areas of medical and safety research, and the general ways in which it has made living conditions more comfortable. Yet, our social skills are on the decline and one has to ask what will become of our future.