пятница, 30 марта 2018 г.

Bitcoins and Freedom

  Currently in most countries, including formally democratic ones, the freedom of speech is violated: main mass media (TV) manipulate the social consciousness.
  It seems quite convincing for me that independent mass media are in principle impossible. Such mass media must criticize the power, but it is impossible to criticize the power without being punished by it. At the same time, democracy can be real only when the mass media in country criticize the authority.
  I think that a kind of salvation for this problem can be as follows: the owner of any popular mass media should get the legislative immunity. If a blogger gets more than a million followers, he should become immune to any prosecution. If such rule is implemented, it will become important to break the legislative immunity of a blogger by posting “dislikes” to him. Once again: there must be a website where any citizen can post a like or dislike to any other person, and a person who gets a million likes less than half a million of dislikes would automatically get the legislative immunity.
  I am sure that the disadvantages of such rule – the possibility for mass media owners to do some crimes – are mostly unimportant in comparison with its main advantage – better freedom of speech for the country.
  I believe that a more well-grounded salvation of the problem of absence of freedom of speech is as follows: independent mass media, which can criticize the power of a country, should be located in another country. More precisely, in each country there should be placed the mass media which will be able to criticize the power of another country.
  A very important point is that all these mass media must have the possibility to earn by direct payments of their viewers of readers.
  The US foreign policy widely uses the democratic peace theory: according to this theory, democratic countries usually do not engage wars with each other:

  This politics could become much more efficient, if US imposed a kind of an agreement of a “common informational space” with each country. This means, for example, that US mass media will have the possibility to show their content to Russian people (and earn by direct payments), while Russian mass media will have the same possibility to show their content to American people (and earn by direct payments). This could be the best possibility to achieve the freedom of speech for both countries.
  Many people do not still realize that the control of mass media gives a ruler the possibility to form any social consciousness he wants. Some apologists of health promotion say that “we are what we eat”; I don’t strongly support this thesis, but I believe that the thesis “we are what information we get” is mostly true. When a dictator controls the mass media in his country, he easily persuades his nation that the “enemies” of his country are the main reason of all problems in the country.
  The propaganda does not rely on fake news; the fake news is rather a “symptom” of the propaganda. The main way of propaganda is passing over the silence and pulling the information out the context. The reality is arranged in such a way that showing a part of a reality to a viewer gives a way to persuade him in anything.
  This means that a person who views a propaganda from two opposite sources is able to remain unbiased. For example, those Americans who watch Russia Today together with American TV channels are more sober-minded than those who watch American channels only (while RT, of course, is a propagandistic channel).
  The freedom of speech can be reached some day, if the Internet beats the television. In this case the whole world would experience a mass sobering, and people will realize that a new society should be built.
  The rise of cryptocurrencies helps to reach this situation, because the cryptocurrencies would make the Internet commercial, and correspondingly it will become more powerful.
  At the moment there are some independent mass media, which criticize the powers of big countries and earn via bitcoins. In particular, the Wikileaks project is such a mass media. When Wikileaks started publishing the information which discredited the US authorities, these authorities blocked the flow of the crowdfunding donations which supported it. The banks refused to send money to the Wikiliaks owner, web money like Paypal blocked them too. The only way for the Wilikeaks to survive was switching to bitcoin crowdfunding.
  A similar situation exists in Russia. Currently there are opposition projects which earn via the bitcoins: “Fund of struggle with the corruption” of Alexey Navalniy, Wiki-project lurkmore.to similar to the American Encyclopedia Dramatica, some Ukrainian channels on Youtube, etc.
  So, it seems for me that the Internet and the cryptocurrencies will save the freedom in the world.

суббота, 24 марта 2018 г.

Consumer society and the bitcoins

  Currently in the whole word (except probably North Korea) the consumer society is dominating. This is shown, for example, by the fact, that most people are anxious very much about their revenue and prosperity. As far as I know, there was not such anxiety in 19th century. The realities of our century, for example, are that during the wars people often suffer from economical sanctions more, than from the military operations themselves.
  Some people are trying to find out why such a situation has appeared. I have heard such interpretation from some people in Russia: “previously they wanted us to become communist builders, and now they want us to become consumers”. 
  I think that in reality the reason for emergence of the consumer society is unexpectedly banal: such mass media, as TV channels and radio stations, are obliged to put a lot of advertisement in their content, because they do not have other sources of revenue. And the excess of advertisement forms the consumer society itself.
  The first mass media were newspapers, which earned on direct sales. When radio and television appeared, these mass media appeared to have no such possibility of earnings – you can not directly pay for viewing a TV program. Because of that, TV and radio had to earn by the advertisements only. This problem in principle could be solved organizationally, in governments instituted a TV tax, calculated the ratings of TV channels and paid the channels a part of this tax, proportional to the channel’s rating. But this task proved too difficult for the politicians.
  The same problem persists for the mass media in the web. Despite there are such web money as Paypal, currently they can’t be used for paying for viewing a content in the web. It’s a pity that we can’t pay Google for cutting of the advertisement at Youtube. I suppose, the possibility to pay for Youtube is not available because of some bureaucratic obstacles: maybe, the US laws do not include such source of revenue, correspondingly Google can’t pay taxes for it, and without the taxes the revenue becomes illegal. In Russia in 75% cases we can’t purchase new films, music, audiobooks in the web, and have to download them from torrents – I suppose the reasons are similar.
   I expect, that if the bitcoins (or, more precisely, the cryptocurrencies) will become the approved money, all these problems will be solved automatically. The Web will become commercial, and correspondingly its quality will become higher. People will pay with the bitcoins for any content instead of watching the obtrusive ads, and the “power of advertisement” will be overthrown.
  A good video concerning the subject: "history of stuff":


  In this video it is said, that the consumer society appeared mainly  in 1950th. This was the time when television became popular, so this video confirms the idea of the connection between the consumer society and TV ads.
  Update 2020: the paid subscription has appeared at youtube, and this seem to be a great blessing. I suppose, when the humanity transfers from TV to paid youtube, the "power of advertisment" will end. However I see that youtube bloggers place ads in their video, so I hope a next step will be made - direct payments to the authors of the videos on youtube (or transfering from youtube to Vimeo).