Monday, April 25, 2011

The impact of pervasive net-connection on human culture and consciousness

Today's post expands Saturday's micro-rant on the impact of pervasive net-connection on human culture and consciousness. I used the term #tribenet as a tag representing the psychological environment created by continuous connection to social circles via multiple devices and social networks. 
Pervasive net-connection is profoundly transforming us individually and collectively. Like any significant technological change it not only impacts what we do but also who we are. We cook in the medium of #tribenet like lobsters in a simmering pot. We are so contextualized within the change that the transformation is almost invisible to us except in retrospect.

Like all cultural and psychological change created through new technology, #tribenet works through the medium of our biology and psychology. For instance, the desire to expose the mundane events of day-to-day life to our virtual tribe likely stems from deep rooted psychological templates unfulfilled since hunter/gatherer days. Tribe 1.0 was social adaptation to the pre-agrarian tech environment; #tribenet is adaptation to the pervasively networked tech environment.

When our attention is focused on #tribenet we are not fully present in the physical world. We check in with #tribenet every hour like young children making sure mommy keeps watching as we go from ride to ride at the playground. Shifting our minds hundreds of times each day to the virtual environment of #tribenet alters the subconscious ground of our mental models of reality. If a tree falls in a forest and someone is there to hear, there is still no sound until they upload the video and share it on #tribenet.
(After posting yesterday, I found out that there was an existing social network called This post is NOT about that site.)


sororNishi said...

Excellent post. I am part of a tribe I didn't know existed a few years ago. It is a little empowering.

Tish Seda said...

What you are talking about here reminds me of a humorous video a saw recently. What if we ran our real lives like we do when we post to Facebook?

Nyx said...

This begs for the question "What Is A Reality Check?" - some may say that by responding to a "Bot" "Girl" - "my head is in the sand" or "in the cloud(s)" - or, like your lobster and the metaphorical boiling frog, perhaps too immersed.

Personally, i say let the "tribe(s)" chatter on. Yes, some things i like to catch in "real-time". (Hated missing your VWBPE keynote.) But this technology has taught me to cut the bounds of absolute where and when and appreciate the message.

Splash Kidd said...

mmhmm virtual soma in the form of social media scobby snacks "hug me baby, drug me"!

Oh stop complaining people, "you've paid for the ticket, now enjoy the ride" Hmmm, ride, what ride? For goodness sakes how do I turn this thing off!?

Oh, wait a nanosecond please, I just got another "friends" request! mmhmm maybe this soma isn't so bad after all! It sort of taste like the kool-aid that Uncle Jimmy use to make, just in a sweeter new flavor! *wicked grin*