The day is coming when the social media information we are consistently interested in is processed and made ready for us in an organized and more concise medium. I see this as an inevitable future, with companies like Google and social networking sites constantly processing our likes and dislikes in order to provide us with more applicable advertisements. Then on the retail side of life, are the digital wallet applications for your smart phones, in which companies like Starbucks and other forward thinking enterprises keep track of your personal purchases. They can in an instant know when you’re in their store and what you might prefer to order. Also in the nature of costumer care and up selling, making more personalized coupons receivable in the palm of your hand.
It can’t be too far off that the news media corporations take this to the next level. Already with less regard for content and more concern for ratings, this next step is a low hanging and obvious fruit. All of a person’s basic values, political affiliations, religious beliefs, level of superficiality, likes and dislikes can now be processed and filtered like a postal system.
On a personal level I typically get my news via NPR whether it’s an article I see on my NPR Facebook App, at the NPR website or listen to on the actual radio. It would be nice if NPR knew I personally really enjoy listening to the show, Science Friday. I more typically than not, either forget or find myself too busy to listen to the show. So why wouldn’t it be in their mutual interest, to either remind me of the show or have the podcast made available and only a tap of the finger away? But it can’t stop there. A person’s interests typically exceed the offerings of any one particular news source. So how long before capitalism over takes the boundaries of these sources and you wake up to your personalized current news about your local weather, political affiliation, your favorite sports teams, the few celebrities whose gossip you just can’t resist or international news from that actual nations perspective. All because your online comings and goings, likes and dislikes and time actually spent on an article or watching a video are constantly monitored and calculated. I understand how this worries some people and they might feel violated to be watched unknowingly and so closely. However for me, I also understand the mentality of the systems performing these diagnostics and keeping tabs on me. They have no interested in my actual beliefs or motives. They have no thoughts of judgment. They purely want to know how they can keep me spending my time and money on them and their endorsers. And that’s all fine by me! My time is precious. I know what I want and what I like. If it better serves me to have others know it too, then the unstoppable natural evolution of media convergence, is one I’m watching with anticipation and novel amusement.