There are plenty of challenges in today’s world. But measured objectively, humanity is in decent shape – globally there’s less poverty and average life expectancy has never been higher. Yet more and more we seem to be at each others’ throats. Why?
One explanation is a shift in media and advertising. Deprived of highly priced print advertising, old and new media have been left chasing high numbers of low-value clicks to survive. A low-cost way to draw clicks is to push anger buttons to unleash waves of indignant sharing. Advertisers and politicians are now using social media to play the same game.
Sociologist Jonathan Haidt thinks social media has the power to activate all our tribal sentiments in ways that make democracy unlikely.
We risk ending up submersed in a river of outrage.
What do you think?