Was George Orwell’s prediction of the future correct? He wasn’t too far off when he thought about a society under complete control. In a world filled with technology that can see one’s every move, there is nowhere to hide. Someone is always watching.
1. Current advances in technology allow for no privacy in public or even in one’s own home. Even software like Google that once used to be harmless now has technology to recognize faces using a facial recognition software. was it thought that online browsing histories were private and confidential? Not anymore. Google can now track every search made when someone is logged into their service. Even though it is optional, it’s still going against one’s right to privacy. Anything that is searched online can now be tracked. Even advertisements on sites such as Facebook use this information to show advertisements based on one’s browsing history.
Advertisements on television use a certain persuasive energy to persuade people to buy their products. These advertising agencies use demographics to decide who to target for their commercial. For example, an ad that promotes a pill that will lower the risk of heart attacks will be aimed towards an older generation whereas a cell phone ad will use a celebrity or “teen heart throb” to promote their product to teens. These advertisements have a sort of control on us as they find what we like to show us something that will make us believe that we need their product. Even political candidates use this technique to persuade voters to vote for them. They appeal to what the voters want, even though what they say may be untruthful. these candidates spy into people’s lives to find what they want from their leader and then show the that they will do whatever it is they want even if they don’t believe in it.
Simple things like garbage cans are now being outfitted with the technology to pry into one’s private affairs. Cleveland now uses Big Brother to find people who do not recycle. in his article Look Out, Cleveland” Your Garbage Can Is Watching You!, Salvatore Cardoni states that, “Thanks to a $2.5 million order of garbage cans and recycle carts embedded with radio frequency identification chips and bar codes, Clevelanders who don’t recycle could be fined $100.” Even our household objects can now spy on us. If something like this is happening now what will it be like 10 years from now? 20 years? What about 2084? George Orwell may have been right in his predictions of the future, just one hundred years too early.
2. George Orwell states in 1984 that, “If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stomping on a human face- forever.” In a sense, he is right. Right now, like in 1984, we are being controlled, the only difference being who the controller is. In 1984, the citizens are controlled by Big Brother and today, we are being controlled by technology. We are living our lives dependent on technology just like the citizens of Oceania were dependent on the Party and Big Brother. Technology is figuratively stomping on our faces. We are lead to believe that these technologies are good, but in reality, they ruin our lives by destroying our privacy. Someone is always watching. For the citizens of Oceania, it was Big Brother, for us it is our cell phones, computers, and even trash cans.
3. Technology will continue to advance each year and even more programs and software will come out that can somehow spy on our private affairs. Before reading this book and the articles following, I did not think much about the cell phone that is always in my pocket or the computer screen I find myself staring at for hours, but now I am almost afraid to use them. I feel as if someone may be watching me through the camera of my phone or the webcam of my computer. In the next few years that actually may be the case. It is possible that ten years from now, I could be spied on every minute of the day through my phone or computer screen, even if they are not turned on. By 2084, it may be possible that I might be watched through a camera hidden in my room in the retirement home so that people may be able to predict the exact time that I would die. Anything is possible and from the way things are going now, I will not be surprised if someday there is a micro chip in my head that detects every thought. There is no telling what someone will come up with.