Digital Manipulation

I come here to WordPress for a break, a breath of fresh air from Facebook which is falling further and further from my favour.  I feel like advertising and social media giants are smothering me there and everywhere.  Sensory overload.  Constant ads, constant competitive forces and pressures tempting my attention away from it’s natural focus points are exhausting me.

I read articles from business and sales companies which emphasize how to keep your audience, how to get people to visit your sites and spend time on your applications, ie- how to manipulate people to achieve your goals, make money and hit targets.

Sure this is business, this is the twenty-first century, but I feel like eventually someone must call time on this and say simply ‘stop!’   Stop using psychology and sales strategies to exert control.  Stop suggesting what I should like and who I should be friends with and what I should buy.  Stop using my browser web history for advertising.  Stop trying to capitalize and monetize everything and everyone.

It feels like a big trick.  I feel like I’m losing touch with myself and losing autonomy over myself.  Are we all?  I don’t know if my choices are my own any more or if I want what I want because advertisers planted ideas and suggestions in my head.  I’ve had enough.

It’s not even limited to distant advertisers any more.  My friends, my family, my partner put pressure on me to ‘like’ their photos and status’, put pressure on me to promote their business’ and livelihoods on their pages.  They don’t do it in a way which is relaxed and easy-going but in a tyrannical ‘do this or it will change how I see you’ mentality.

I take great issue with this.  Am I over-reacting or can anyone else relate to this strain on relationships brought on by social media?     I get frustrated with advertising pushing their products at me, but now my friends and acquaintances do it too and try to force me to perpetuate this further.

I see it simply as a bad way of being and living, a disorganised fight for attention and commodity – capitalism at its worst, stretching its greedy, filthy arms outwards covering not only the market and the money but the people and their minds and their respect for others.

I think this life would work better for everyone if we stopped competing and instead worked together to fulfill needs- valid, actual, important, non-superficial needs.  This is as opposed to the ego-centric, non-essential needs that are put to me every day like the latest lip gloss from fucking Max Factor.

Advertising is hi-jacking my world.  And putting me in bad form.