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NOTHING COMES FREE

Two weeks ago the noise and the chatter of social media became too much for me. Ten years or more ago I believed that facebook, twitter, myspace, and google plus had the potential to inform, educate, and enrich the lives of all of us. Instead, all platforms have become uncontrollable behemoths enriching the lives only…

Two weeks ago the noise and the chatter of social media became too much for me. Ten years or more ago I believed that facebook, twitter, myspace, and google plus had the potential to inform, educate, and enrich the lives of all of us. Instead, all platforms have become uncontrollable behemoths enriching the lives only of those who own them. Everyone who signs up becomes a product. That is why facebook describes itself as “free and always will be.”
Companies like facebook, Amazon, Google have several concerns. Their shareholders and their multiplying wealth. When competitors pop up they are purchased. It is the new way of silencing those competitors. After all, money talks.
When we post to facebook, especially if we have something we believe is of value to say, we are speaking to our ‘friends’. Friends are those whom we choose to involve in our lives, regardless of whether we agree with their views or not. Sometimes we disagree, and we do so as friends. After all, debate, framed sensibly, is a healthy way to interact.
What we do not welcome, are those ‘friends’ who are ‘friends’ of your ‘friends.’ Without invitation, without any knowledge of who YOU are, they fire off comments of five or six words, simply using foul language in order to denigrate you, and your post.
We, who are not American, are denigrated by these ‘friends’ of ‘friends’, simply because they can. Whatever happens in the USA at this unfortunate moment in time, affects most of us in the western world. It affects our politics and our social existence. That alone gives us the right to comment on what essentially are World Affairs.
The exponentially increasing digitization of our world is taking our lives. Even to the point where we have been misled to believe that everything in the digital world should come for free. After all, isn’t facebook free? It even claims that it is “free and always will be.”
Nothing is free. YOU are the product and YOU put the astrononical wealth into the pockets of the few simply by being on facebook. That would almost be acceptable if our own work, our books, our articles, our artwork, our music, our photography, and even our very personal daily lives, hopes and dreams, were not monetized by social media.
We are EXPECTED to give away our months of research and work, and it has even come to the point where the very artists, writers, photographers and musicians who invest so much of themselves in their work actually believe that by giving away their work, they will somehow make profit. Inch by inch, moment by moment, those same people are giving away their livelihood. They argue that by giving something away, they will entice others to purchase what they have created. It is a fallacy.
The digital world is devouring you. It makes your political viewpoint, it promises gold and gives you little more than fleeting moments of satisfaction.
It is without conscience. Bullying, trolling, and falsity causes more than a few suicides. It destroys the soul little by little.

Author: grahamwhittaker
What do I call myself? A novelist? A journalist? Writer on demand? Copywriter? Ghostwriter? Poet? Is there a single word to describe all these things? if anyone knows one please tell me. I started out life as a journalist after my service time in the RN. I was 22. My love then was music writing, contributing articles to most of the pop/rock magazines of the time. As time went by I ghostwrote biographies for celebs, wrote novels, and made a general living from writing everything from love letters to translating menus in China to acceptable English. I have written greetings cards, manuals, How to books on so many subjects I forget. My living has been as a writer on demand. So, my blog is an eclectic collection of HOW MY BRAIN WORKS. Recently I started writing blogs for company blogs. In my retirement I find myself writing more, about more subjects than I ever covered as a roving journalist. I ask myself why having reached the age of leisure why I am now busier than ever before! My last novel, The Girl From Kosovo has led to a second, which will be on your bookshops next year 2014, and my new anthology of shorts with the title Picking Up Peas With Chopsticks has just been uploaded as an ebook. (It's a pot boiler so don't expect a print version any time soon.) If you have a blog, or a job to offer, I'm an obsessive researcher and turnaround time is fast. Yes, I know, I'm a HACK. A writer for money. A gun for hire. But hey... we all have our failings. Thanks for calling in. Feel free to chat and comment. I'll even get back to you with a thank you note!

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