Defusing Political Polarization
Perverse Incentives in the Media and Politics
I was speaking to a friend the other day. He had just watched a marketing seminar explaining how to successfully build a brand and execute marketing.
“It’s all about Polarization. If you don’t have haters, then you’re doing something wrong.”
When I take a step back, this seems like a strange idea to me. Our systems incentivize outrage and negative emotions in order to optimize for monetization. Facebook, Google, Twitter, and Big Tech are in the process of controlling the “correct” negative emotions, so that if one’s outrage isn’t compatible with the Big Tech Weltanschauung, it gets turned off, suppressed, and repressed. 2021 is the new 1984.
Taking personal politics aside, does it seem reasonable that Big Tech has the power to ban and censor the President of the United States from the conversation, while allowing CCP State sponsored propaganda from China to be broadcast freely?
Polarity does not decrease through suppression. It only creates additional tension and pressure. I was only able find visualization of political polarization from 1994-2017. Radicalization is happening on both sides, and we can see that the extreme left has a higher amplitude at the edges, but the radicalization of the right has also increased.
It’s time to reflect and ask the question: Is it possible that you are being emotionally hijacked by news and social media to inflame your in-group bias that is clouding your perception of reality?
It is definitely feeling more polarized than ever. However, it is time for a new movement. Red vs. Blue is the wrong game. Unity 2020 was a start.
2021 is a new year. We all have a part to play. What Game are you playing?
> If you don’t have haters, then you’re doing something wrong.
Offers valuable insight, if examined thoughtfully, with a broad perspective.
In politics, aligning and mobilizing the team has been a proven strategy since 2008. But for products, the value of “team”-centric thinking is far less clear.
Clearly, Apple has haters. But to the extent that Apple convinces the entire world that we’re on the SAME team, they win.
Polarization is an unsophisticated strategy. Brilliant design, and extraordinary quality require talent, effort and time. Hatred is easy. Trolls may inspire progress (in opposition to their trolling) but their negativity itself is not moving us forward.
One of the nine things that great leaders do is to “hate the right things well.” So if haters point a way forward, they’re not without value. But they’re not “doing” anything to create value.
Perhaps that’s a focal point:
What is what you’re thinking, saying or doing contributing to the world? What’s the value?
what game indeed