Are human beings becoming social constructs?
Populations are undergoing a quiet revolution. We can cite some of the reasons: television; education; job training and employment requirements; the Surveillance State; government organizations who follow a “zero tolerance” policy; inundation with advertising.
It’s all geared to produce people who are artificial constructs.
And this is just the beginning. There are a number of companies (see, for example,affectiva.com) who are dedicated to measuring “audience response” to ads and other public messages. I’m talking about electronic measuring. The use of bracelets, for instance, that record students’ emotional responses to teachers in classrooms, in real time. (Bill Gates shoveled grant money into several of these studies. See also here.)
Then there is facial recognition geared to the task of revealing how people are reacting when they sit at their computers and view websites.
Push-pull, ring the bell, watch the dog drool for his food. Stimulus-response.
It’s not much of a stretch to envision, up the road a few years, whole populations more than willing to volunteer for this kind of mass experimentation. But further than that, we could see society itself embrace, culturally, the ongoing measurement of stimuli and responses.
“Yes, I want to live like this. I want to be inside the system. I want to be analyzed. I want to be evaluated. I want to accept the results. I want to be part of the new culture. Put bracelets on me. Measure my eye movements, my throat twitches that indicate what I’m thinking, and my brain waves. Going to a movie should include the experience of wearing electrodes that record my second-to-second reactions to what’s happening on the screen. I like that. I look forward to it…”
In such a culture, “Surveillance State” would take on a whole new dimension.
“Sir, I want to report a malfunction in my television set. I notice the monitoring equipment that tracks my responses to shows has gone on the blink. I want it reattached as soon as possible. Can you fix it remotely, or do you need to send a repair person out to the house? I’ll be here all day…”