New Technologies Blurring Online and Offline Worlds and Disrupting the Personal Sphere

LaLibre.be published an article on Wednesday 3 May 2017 entitled “The gradual disappearance of frontiers between life online and life offline”

“Almost 5 billion people will be online by 2030. That’s more than half of the planet’s population and represents an increase of 300% compared with the middle of the 1990s – the Web’s infancy – according to figures from Euromonitor International. With almost 4 billion people online today, we have now entered what the experts are calling “the age of online living”, when the frontiers between our online and offline identity and life are becoming increasingly blurred.”

“…this digital transition is in the process of changing our way of understanding reality in four ways. First, by blurring the distinction between reality and virtuality. Second, by hiding the barriers between man, machine and nature. Third, by inverting the economic information equation from scarcity to abundance. And, to conclude in style, by moving from the pre-eminence of entities on interactions to one of interactions on entities (a change that companies such as Google and Facebook have learn to convert ​​into huge value, both for users and advertisers). “

On Artificial intelligence:

“The impact of the online age can be understood simply by taking account of the increase in the capabilities of artificial intelligence. For years AI was merely an interesting topic of university research, whereas now it is an area that is expanding on an industrial scale as a result of the massive investments made by the giants of Silicon Valley.”

“The importance of these systems in our daily lives is constantly growing and continues to increase as machine learning advances – to the point that computers are now able to learn and evolve at an accelerated pace, requiring minimal input from man.”

On “The danger of Big Brother”:

“The quality of public circles may be compromised by the increase in social control using mutual or lateral monitoring, making your profiles accessible on social media along with passing on the GPS coordinates of your sporting activities to employers, an insurance company or simply to your classmates. This is not necessarily more acceptable than “big brother” surveillance, as demonstrated by cyber-intimidation. “

“This wealth of information may also result in cognitive overload, distraction and amnesia, while studies into workers and students show that new forms of vulnerability result from our growing dependence on the information infrastructures.”

“…the advent of the online life age calls for the development of a new series of fundamental rights for citizens, such as those proposed recently in the Italian parliament’s Declaration of Online Rights.”

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