eryk-129284-unsplashPhoto by Eryk on Unsplash

I joined Digital Life Collective because the rate of acceleration in our use of technologies is likely to grow at such a pace that, if we are not careful, in the motion blur of innovation we will be railroaded into technologies that do not align with our needs and desires. Humanity’s technological direction and evolution should be determined by our needs, not the blind possibility of the tech or the greed of markets.

Already the sheen of the first titans from Silicon Valley is coming off, but their influence continues to grow. It is alarming that Google and Facebook have built some of the biggest surveillance networks ever. They have baited their honey traps with an algorithmic exploitation of our attention. Their service to the majority of its users is merely to serve them up for the service of its premium users, but they present an image of having their ordinary users best interests at heart. At the same time, their engineering of how we spend our time and money is designed to decrease our volition.

They are dishonest, curtail freedom, have structural inequality built in, and the driver is that they are owned and controlled by a group infinitesimally smaller than their user base. This tech, useful and ubiquitous as it is… can’t be trusted.

Time for Tech we Trust
It is important to note that the Digital Life Collective is not an attempt to stall or slow the development of technology. Rather it is an attempt to develop technologies that respect equality, privacy, and are resistant to centralised control and ownership in order to better secure the long-term survival and success of humanity.

Digital Life Collective
My take - and there may be many- is that the Digital Life Collective is set up as an enabling environment for an ecosystem of activities that will :

a)at least craft a set of tools that match and exceed those built under the extractive/surveillance model of technology that increases options as it decreases choice.

b)create a widespread expectation and adoption of technology we can trust so that that this becomes the default.

Early criteria for trustable tech

I joined the Digital Life Collective with some sense of what trustable tech meant, among the criteria I think should be considered are the following.

The technology:

— serves the user as the primary role, not as a way of mining a human resource be it identity, attention, relationships, driving skills, content production.

— respects the user and treats everything the user creates as essentially the users, from the deliberate acts of content creation or seeking information to the incidental footprints, traces or shadows they leave.

— enhances user abilities and our understanding of the world instead of just replacing some of our tasks.

— solves user needs with the minimal possible tech interaction.

Making it happen
The Digital Life Collective is already trialling and deploying some incredible new collaborative technologies and I look forward to using them to help create tech we trust. Join Me.