The gods of silicon Valley and the entrails of their Crime Scene

By now if you haven’t watched British journalist @carolecadwalla ’s TED Talk, then stop everything now. Cadwalla, in case you need reminding is The Guardian/ Observer journalist whom exposed the work of Cambridge Analytica and their malpractices. This week she’s also been shortlisted as a finalist, working with the NYT, for a Pulitzer.

Here’s part of her TED segment below. The platformers of the digital era have, to put it lightly, she says, become accomplices towards the destruction of democracy.

Now, to a theory. This texts below comes from a book The Alphabet Versus the Goddess by Leonard Shlain. An extraordinary book that charts the demise of women as deities and how words and the alphabet were the cause.

Have a quick read through and then in the same text, I’ve altered a few words.

Now substitute a few words to this.

Leonard Shlain, who sadly has passed away, would probably make the point, that what’s happening in tech, we’ve been here before. History then was not kind; he writes that the introduction of the written word and in particularly the alphabet resulted in the violent desecration and overturn of women as deities and peace-givers to a masculine society which promulgated wars, which at the height of the renaissance burnt women alive.

As humans we’ve been able to create a new equilibrium of intolerance which democracy has been able, until now, hold in check.

Shlain’s book, a best seller charts the demise of matriarchy through the conflict between images and word. It’s worth a read for igniting new ideas as history wags its tail. By the end of the 400 page book, there is some solace; how it refers to now is a different matter.

Shlain saw hope in the return of images as a dominant form of communication. We see that through Instagram, twitter, the onus on video etc, but the rise in tech platforms and the message coming from @carolecadwalla raises new questions. History again in another 10 years plus may have to provide us with concrete answers.

Written by

Top Writer & Creative Technologist, Int. Award Winner. Cinemajournalist. Cardiff Uni @jomec. PhD (Dublin). Visiting Prof UBC, Ex BBC/C4News. Apple profiled.

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