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Hi, This is Wayne. This is my site, my stuff, my blog, blahblahblah. The site itself is powered by WordPress and the Scary Little theme. I thought it was cool, and I still do.

7:10 am
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Ok, in my “Conspiracy Theories” category, I submit another one here about blogging, anonymity, polls and voting.

Think about these facts:

  • Blogs number in the millions.
  • You usually can’t verify the identity of the blogger easily unless you do it manually.
  • Many blogs are opinion-oriented.
  • Polls of real humans are usually biased by the poll-taker, or at least the results are presented in a biased way.
  • People are frequently moved somewhat by the polls they hear about. (ie, “the majority of Americans are opposed to stem cell research” might be stated, but there’s so much context to take into account and possible bias in the polls that in my opinion, you can’t trust the resulting statement).
  • Voting booths are becoming more and more digital, with the possibility of less and less of a paper trail.

Where am I heading with this? Check out the extended entry below.


I think it’s conceivable that mass manipulation of opinion can be made via the fabrication of blogging “metrics”, where the cataloging and categorization of blog posts, comments, “diggs”, online polls, pre-vote results from machines, and mostly-unverifyable submissions.

If you take that and add in electronic voting without a paper trail and you have an incredibly powerful and dangerous weapon for swaying reality.

Perhaps we need some sort of self-governing authentication system, like PGP’s Web of Trust, that helps authenticate bloggers, publishers, and others so we can verify that the stated or referenced opinions are “valid”.  In this kind of system, you use credentials granted by others, verified by multiple in-person meetings with other verified individuals, and is usually done in a free or very low cost manner.

Then the Conspiracy Theory gets even better when I start thinking of computational and indexing systems, with artificial intelligence, than can process and parse all these blog entries, comments, etc and make market decisions, political choices and other societally-impacting items for any number of motives.

Oh no.  Then I think Google.  (insert shudder here).  Google is indexing everything, blogs, web sites, photos (add in face recognition software), movies, and oh my gosh it’s already happening.

Take videos for example (haha, that’s a pun).  We have cameras and vid-cams on our cell phones, traffic cams, beach cams, web cams and the technology just gets cheaper and cheaper.  Eventually the cost of an always-on video camera gets to be so low that it’s a commodity in everything.  Doors, walls, exteriors, computers, traffic lights, stop signs, phones, windows, TV’s, dashboard consoles, appliances of all kinds, belt buckles, pens, who knows what.  Then they become wireless, uploading it’s feed to the nearest feedstation, making everything everywhere weblogg’ed and categorized. 

People won’t be able to escape the capture of their image, actions, to be forever archived in the annals of civilization.

And if there exists the capability of software to do immediate face recognition, then all you gotta do is constantly have a tap into all the web feeds everywhere, rapidly assign ID’s to folks as they go about their day, and everyone will be tracked.

Algorithms and mathematical equations will pop up that define patterns of behavior that result in statistical probabilities of future actions.  IE, let’s say we have data about white males in a “red state” who own a gun that frequent Rudy’s BBQ, voted in the last election for a pro-life candidate, has 3 kids, a history of car accidents and two or more moving violations, has been fired from their job in the last 4 months, scores badly in fantasy football leagues, drives a navy blue car and plays the lottery… and we find out that 98% of them commit suicide.  What would we do with that info?  Would we ferret out criminals before they commit a crime, like in Minority Report?  Or would we use genetics to pre-plan someone’s role in society, like in Gattaca?

My mind is filled with possibilities, scenarios, and ways that things like this could happen over time.

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