The dark side of technology
Modern technology continues to have a huge impact on our daily lives since in its essentiality it aims at solving existing or forecasted problems. In so doing it reduces cost and improves efficiency. For example, the invention of the computer coupled with the internet has brought about dramatic changes in how man conducts his business. Its effects are felt in all sectors from business, research, communication, ad infinitum. Some of technology’s advantages include, the creation of employment, increased accessibility to products which has translated to increased consumer sovereignty, increased market for products and ease in the collection of data through the use of internet-based survey, improved healthcare etc. On the other hand, technology has also brought about intense problems. This article aims to discuss the dark side of technology.
Loss of Jobs
To start with, mechanization and automation of industries have led to immense unemployment. Machines are taking over jobs that were traditionally done by man. Introduction of conveyor belts and packaging robots in the industries led to the laying off of many workers. According to a report by Manyika, (Manyika et.al. 2017 ) about half of the activities that people are paid to do globally could theoretically be automated using current demonstrated technologies. The report further states that about 30 percent of hours worked globally could be automated. This translates to about 800 million jobs lost by 2030. Researchers argue that parental job loss could have a wide range of negative effects on their families. Effects include negative impacts in the families’ economic security, mental and physical health which in some cases leads to divorce.
The continued use of technology has led to men over dependency on it. For example, the use of calculators, which might be argued it increases accuracy and reliability of calculations, has led to the brain becoming lazy and ultimately limiting its potential. Most people are nowadays unable or refuse to solve simple mathematical problems without the aid of a calculator. Spell checkers applications can also be used to explain the same. Smart-phones, video games, and consoles have also proved to be addictive if used for a long time.
The use of the dark web for criminal activities is well documented. A good illustration is the Silk Road (market-place) before it’s shut down by the FBI in 2013 and 2014 (Duverge, 2016). This was a well-known online black-market that facilitated the sale of illegal drugs. Such dark web black market platforms have also been known to enable the sale of weapons, child trafficking, and other social evils. As Robert Oppenheimer witnessed the detonation of the first nuclear weapon the phrase “now I am become death, the destroyer of the worlds” run through his mind (Hijiya, 2000). This shows the sheer capacity of the weapon to cause death and destruction. Such weapons have continued to be used in wars all over the world. This has led to annihilation of populations.
As we celebrate the advancement in technology and enjoy the help and the ease it provides, we must also realize and appreciate the good and bad of technology are mutually inclusive. We must also accept, as bitter as it might be that man is the driver of technology. We must thus accept that most if not all of the dark side of technology is propelled by man either due to his evil nature, laziness, ignorance or hubris.
Duverge, G. (2016, August). Closing the Dark Net. Retrieved from point park/criminal justice: http://online.pointpark.edu/criminaljustice/silk-road-busts/
Hijiya, J. A. (2000). The Gita of J. Robert Oppenheimer. Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, 144(2), 123. Retrieved from https://www.jstor.org/stable/1515629?seq=1#metadata_info_tab_contents
Manyika, J., Lund, S., Chui, M. Boughing, J., Woetzel, J., Batra, P., Ko, R., & Sanghvi, S., s. l. (2017 ). Jobs lost, Jobs gained: what the future of work will mean for jobs, skills, and wages. Mckinsey Global Institute.