Entirely Tech


Wednesday June 12 2019

Cyber society a reflection

Dr David Cliff

DR DAVID CLIFF | Managing Director of Gedanken

Cyber society a reflection

As a species, we are not very good at looking ahead. We have scientists, planners and philosophers that can shed light on our future, but in reality, we tend to respond to life on a needs must basis, kicking the can of the foreseeable down the road.


Take for example the World Wide Web. The freedom of the Web allowed new paradigms of human communication and expression to take place. Equally that very freedom led to massive amounts of unacceptable content, creation of the dark web for illicit purposes, and, rampant cyber fraud. Whether for legal or illicit purposes our own data resulted in us becoming commoditised.


We are seeing the same with social media. Despite the well-intentioned hopes of Messrs Zuckerberg, and other tech giants, to connect us with the rest of the world for a positive and shared human experience, in reality, social media has become a platform for some of the most negative aspects of humanity.


People are influenced to behave in ways that, without exposure to the Web, they probably wouldn’t have considered. We hear of teenage girls, committing suicide; young people defecting to foreign shores to fight for ideological causes, or having involvement in something that is risky, illegal or just plain tasteless.


Information is issued without context or understanding of how it may be viewed. When consumed through a device screen, as part of our reality, information can become bland, anodyne and in some cases positively dangerous amongst the young, the desperate, the misguided or just plain naïve.


In true closing the door after the horse has bolted style, we now hear politicians of all colours calling for the greater regulation. Anyone with half an ounce of insight could see the information super highway had innate dangers from its outset. The problem is we don't know what we don't know. Social evils are often tolerated for a long time, until systems are threatened, people die and society changes in ways that are of concern. Interventions are not thoughtful, but remedial, and our legislators, and others, instead of countenancing care for the population, are caught in a perverse game of catch-up.


Let's take our biggest challenge, the climate. It’s gratifying to see social media used to bring out the best in people; to allow young people to protest, but the problem needs to be unpicked. I wonder how many of those children are brought to school in gas guzzling 4x4s, by parents taking them overseas on a regular basis?


Commercially, there are 100 companies creating 80% of the pollution. The Government has taken EU guidance not to produce rolling roads, which could have detected lorries, many averaging just four miles per gallon, as well as the pollution they caused. Instead, Government appears to prefer to penalise the ordinary motorists who contribute just 10% of our pollution load. We are fiddling whilst Rome burns, often we are blaming the wrong people and guilting them into being part of the solution or taxing them excessively.


Can we really have the presence of mind to really forego our lifestyles for an issue? Or, is it better just to use social media to shout about changing the world without actually doing anything?


Worldwide, everyone is aware of the issues, but relatively few are prepared to take the pain of implementing, in some cases, very Draconian measures to correct what is wrong. These measure would require personal sacrifice, personal responsibility and thoughtfulness. It's no good running a hybrid, if your neighbour sits in the car with his diesel engine running. The term ‘inconvenient truths’ has been directly linked to climate change. There are many inconvenient roles and responsibilities in the fallout of addressing this.


Meat returning to being a luxury item rather than regular fare; shrinkage of markets; buying high quality well-made materials that last rather than a disposable items destined for land-fill. All of these engender some of the challenges ahead. Frankly, none of us are prepared to think about these outcomes, not even governments; lest it affect the markets; lest it affect those ruling elites who will survive whatever Armageddon we may face ultimately.


So, let's be touched by the children campaigning for change but recognise what really makes a difference. Personal responsibility suffused by those with the real means of control having an open heart over the bank balance.


My fear is that by the time we reach that level of realisation many species will have vanished from the planet and indeed our own may be in danger.

"Social evils are often tolerated for a long time, until systems are threatened, people die and society changes in ways that are of concern. "
Dr David Cliff, Managing Director of Gedanken

DISCLAIMER: The statements, opinions, views and advice expressed in this article are those of the author/organisation and not of ENTIRELY. This article should represent information correct at the time of publication however whilst every care has been taken to present up-to-date and accurate information, we cannot guarantee that inaccuracies will not occur. ENTIRELY will not be held responsible for any claim, loss, damage or inconvenience caused as a result of any information within this article or any information accessed through this site. The content of any organisations websites which you link to from ENTIRELY are entirely out of the control of ENTIRELY, and you proceed at your own risk. These links are provided purely for your convenience and do not imply any endorsement of or association with any products, services, content, information or materials offered by or accessible to you at the organisations site.

Discover our Industry Magazines

Discover our UK Regional Magazines

North West Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely North West UK
East of England Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely East England UK
Ireland Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely Ireland
London Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely London UK
Midlands Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely Midlands UK
North East Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely North East UK
Scotland Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely Scotland
South East Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely South East UK
South West Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely South West UK
Wales Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely Wales
Yorkshire Business News, Jobs and Events | Entirely Yorkshire UK

Datamere Software Solutions

Datamere Software Solutions is an award-winning development company that offers a complete downstream package for gas suppliers. Established in 1998, Datamere created its market leading Gas Management System which offers a modular approach for portfolios of varying sizes.The company has also created bespoke software solutions for hospitality, healthcare and HR industries and is currently working on the development of GMS V4 and GENUS.


Founded in 1981, JMC IT is an award-winning IT support partner based in Agecroft, Salford.

The Config Team

The Config Team -SAP Logistics and Warehouse Management Specialists - was founded in 1994. With its head consultant office based in Skelmersdale, the successful solutions it has delivered to globally respected names give it a reputation as a leading authority in SAP Logistics implementation.

Kieron James


Kieron started his career as a Teacher before moving into the emerging market of web domain names sales in 1999. In 2005, he branched out into telecoms, founding Zimo,which won the industry's Service Provider of the Year Award in 2008. He went on to cofound Nexbridge, wich provides industry-leading telecoms services to communications providers and recently branched out into IP telephony services with the popular WHYPAY conferencing service which offers free conference calls to UK businesses.


Virtual PA HR Services

Behind every successful business owner, consultant or freelancer is a team of support staff making sure that everything runs like clockwork. I offer a range of support services that will help your business do just that.By using Virtuelle's professional, flexible and affordable business support, all the day-to-day things that take up your time and energy are taken care of, so you can concentrate on what really matters to you running and growing a successful business.