Digital Frustrations: A Look at Today's Social Media Landscape

Feeling the need to share something, but unsure where to start? I started by selecting myself a couple of my interests to talk about: tech, SaaS, politics, music & movies. There is almost nothing positive for me to write on these issues.

I actually feel upset about social media, shocked and amazed by how society is behaving online, and sad about the movie industry declining because of the pandemic, the streaming platforms, and the frenzy for quick-consumption videos. Music has already gone through the same thing, there is no way for a musician to make money unless people dance in short form videos to their music. I want to but I can't see a bright future, not because I'm pessimistic, but because I'm not hopeful in humanity's efforts enough, to be optimistic. About software scene, I witness how reckless, careless and profit-oriented big-tech is, and I get more frustrated when I see expensive cumulative monthly subscriptions for all the tiny bit of functional requirement that's there to replace manual work all handled by multiple separate parties, sum up to be expensive online equivalent of water, electricity, and gas bills. The way open-source coding is developed and managed makes small projects messy and difficult to manage. There is almost nothing positive for me to write on these issues.

The future of mankind in chronological order :)

Don't Look Up



So, what's the plan? What can I write about these issues? Everyone shares things on social media for no reason. They do it out of habit, addiction, and to feed the algorithm gods. These posts don't have any benefit, and they make so-called "social" platforms even more dependent on algorithms every day. People end up sharing what the algorithms want them to share, rather than what they want to share. But the real problem is everyone feeling like they have to share something, feeling obligated to share, and thinking sharing is the vital norm and humanity has this pre-accepted by default.

The other day, I came across a young musician who had become an influencer giving stadium concerts worldwide. Fortunately, he was talented enough not to create a feeling of waste with these opportunities. This musician said, "I started doing these things and sharing them in a period where people could showcase their creativity, 10 years ago." 10 years ago, he said, YouTube and other social media platforms were freer, not governed by algorithms. Back then, we could produce things that truly came from within us, not just what the platform would like. And those creative works could be heard.

But then what happened? Through all social media channels, everyone turned to creating content that would appeal to the algorithm, rather than sourced from their own creativity. In order to make a few pennies, they turned into people producing and sharing content the algorithms would be fond of.

And now, to add to the mess, AI is in the mix. What happened? Now what they share isn't even their own creativity and production. With AI, people create something and in order to make the algorithm happy about it, creating an extraordinary rubbish heap that no one needs. Some collect bottles and boxes from this dumpster. And there are ones who have been known to share content for 10 years and have become richer and more influential, even though they increasingly create works that appeal to algorithms. Those collecting their pennies from the dumpster, idolize them.

People have no preferences anymore; sold goods are now defined and decisions are made by influencers. People called "influencers" decide whether they should buy something or not. They show it for 3 seconds, say "buy it," and people buy it. All stock runs out. There's no possibility of this being a conscious decision, of course. Reactive shopping emerged. Shopping used to be about buying goods and services according to physical or even emotional needs. Now it's just about impulsively buying something for instant gratification, for a thrill, to be satisfied by obeying. Besides the digital garbage dump generated by social media and influencers, this leads to and adds to the physical dump a pile of unnecessary items bought impulsively but never used.


I am Devrim Vardar.

I write code, fiction,
and non-fiction.

Full-Stack Developer, Startup Entrepreneur & Sociology PhD.

Sharing thoughts on Tech, SaaS, Politics, Music & Movies

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