“Big Brother is Watching You.”
― George Orwell, 1984
One major question that I have been asking myself lately is this.
Why am I paying big tech companies hundreds of dollars every month so that they can invade my privacy, track my whereabouts at all times, listen in on my private conversations, and even potentially watch my every move?
The Orwellian dystopia of 1984 has become more reality than fiction, and in my estimation, we are going to be forced to make difficult decisions in the very near future concerning the dangerous influence of big tech.
Facebook Co-Founder, Chris Hughes, published an op-ed piece in the New York Times this week, sounding the alarm on the unrestrained power and control of Facebook and its CEO Mark Zuckerberg, saying that it’s time to break up the giant tech platform, which is now worth half a trillion dollars. What started as the dream of two friends in a Harvard dorm room has turned into one of the most powerful, influential companies in the world.
Hughes, who left the company over a decade ago, is very concerned with the path Zuckerberg has taken. He said that Facebook “commands, by my estimate, more than 80 percent of the world’s social networking revenue. It is a powerful monopoly, eclipsing all of its rivals and erasing competition from the social networking category.”
Such comments coming from the Facebook co-founder should certainly be heeded. Hughes recognizes that those who control information, control the culture.
“Mark’s influence is staggering, far beyond that of anyone else in the private sector or in government. He controls three core communications platforms — Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp — that billions of people use every day. Facebook’s board works more like an advisory committee than an overseer, because Mark controls around 60 percent of voting shares. Mark alone can decide how to configure Facebook’s algorithms to determine what people see in their News Feeds, what privacy settings they can use and even which messages get delivered. He sets the rules for how to distinguish violent and incendiary speech from the merely offensive, and he can choose to shut down a competitor by acquiring, blocking or copying it.”https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/09/opinion/sunday/chris-hughes-facebook-zuckerberg.html
If you haven’t been paying attention to the news, you should start. Consider the following troubling headlines.
Just last month, Senate conservatives, led by Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, renewed claims that the big tech giants of Facebook, Google, and Twitter have been censoring conservative free speech on their platforms.
“By almost any measure the giant tech companies today are larger, and more powerful, than Standard Oil was when it was broken up,” Cruz said. “And if we have tech companies using the powers of monopoly to censor political speech, I think that raises real antitrust issues.”https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2019/04/10/facebook-google-twitter-under-fire-senate-republicans-censoring-conservatives-online/?utm_term=.3312f885122e
It is no secret that Zuckerberg, Bezos and the majority of big tech bosses in Silicon Valley espouse extreme liberal ideology and contribute millions of dollars each year to radical liberal agendas. In other words, they are committed to agendas that are antithetical and diametrically opposed to the gospel and Christian worldview.
As Christians and committed followers of Christ, we must truly begin to have conversations with God and each other about the potential threat of big tech companies and their ability to censor, surveil, influence, and disseminate information. The more we grow dependent on technology, the more susceptible we become to big tech manipulation and deception.
Will there every be a point where Christians must cut themselves off completely from the technological mainstream in order to maintain a clear and clean conscience? I personally believe it will reach that point.
As I have said before and will say again, God’s people must rely upon the power, wisdom and presence of the Holy Spirit like never before if we are to navigate the challenges coming in these last days.
I leave you with the words of our Lord Jesus Christ.
“When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.[John 16:13]