Technology is rapidly improving around us, all the while breaking us as humans.
A century from now, historians and scientists will look back at these years and write volumes on how technology evolved society in a negative way.
I'm not going Amish on you anytime soon, but as much as I love my gadgets and technology all around me I do hate watching how it is eroding a lot of what makes humans great.
When a celebrity decides to film, make jokes and then publish a video to their millions of fans of a dead body hanging from a tree, there is a problem.
When a spoiled, rich, simpleton is given ultimate power and chooses to spend his time throwing tantrums with my dick is bigger than your dick hates to the world, there is a problem.
When people repeatedly share, react to and celebrate something they saw online without taking even a moment to verify if it is true or for thinking for themselves, there is a problem.
Take a scroll through your network of choice and you'll see what I mean. People pimping the latest pyramid scheme, sharing red or blue propaganda or someone butting in with their opinion when no one asked for it.
Sadly, a large chunk of humanity has given over the power of their thoughts to the hive mind fishbowl they've created around themselves. By only seeing, hearing and watching views similar to their own they now believe and share all that is thrown at them.
Remember when the rule was that you never talked about sex, money or politics with friends? Now, no topics are off limits with people thirst trapping for attention at every possible corner. Sure, it isn't always about the abs and boobs, but the cry for attention and validation is certainly there.
Every morning I look at my "On This Day" link in Facebook to see status updates from years past. When I see what some people post every day, I can't imagine what it is going to feel like to look back at those a year, five years or more from now. How sad and emotionally draining will that be? What will their empty anger or blind following shares trigger in them at that point?
It seems that in today's world everything has to be at the extremes. Having a constructive disagreement about anything is nearly impossible. Look at any issue you believe in and try to find content and conversation around it that is more than a version of this side is wrong and this side is right. We have to find middle ground if changes are ever going to be made.
I'm convinced part of this is our brains have been trained that we must either like/love/click on something or not. Our emotions have to fit into a single emoji when we read it on Facebook. Ever had that ping of "crap, my reaction to this doesn't fit one of these by themselves" and then do nothing? I know I have.
We are never going to give up our phones and screens. I enjoy having so much power and connectivity in my hand. We all enjoy the dopamine hit we get when someone reacts positively to something we created and shared.
Many of my friends are beginning to pull away from the big networks. Private groups, group text chats, and one-on-one conversations are becoming more common.
People are starting to realize that Black Mirror isn't a simple television show, but one-hour warning commentaries on our human sacrifices to technology.
The world is powered by technology, but it will be destroyed by humans.
Use and love technology, but don't become a slave to it.
Have your own thoughts and don't be afraid to share them.
Talk to people. Interact with your fellow humans beyond a screen.
Cook a meal that doesn't come out of a box. Sit down around the table with friends so you can hear what is really going on in their lives rather than only what they are choosing to share online.
Take the time to research and find out an answer beyond asking your listening device of choice for the shortcut.
Think of others before yourself. Get your personal priorities straight and so much else will fall by the wayside.
Assholes will always exist and technology has allowed them to self-identify themselves to the world. Don't give them the attention they crave.
We can't let the algorithms and robots win. Be a good human.