If you are reading this article, then chances are high that you are using the internet—right? Actually, it would be virtually impossible to read this otherwise, unless it was to be put in print. Allow us all to be very, very honest with ourselves: the internet practically rules everything. How many times have you felt absolutely lost without your smartphone with no access to the internet or social media?
You know that sense of absolute dread and fear you feel in the pit of your stomach, acknowledging the fact that your cell phone is nowhere near? Without your cell phone, how would you know who is emailing you job offers? How would you read your super important wall posts placed by interested consumers? And—worst of all—how would you deal without accessing all of your social media accounts or using Google to ask a question?
You’d have no Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest or Instagram to turn to. As many SoundCloud plays reviews dictate, you wouldn't have much music left if the internet died, either - almost 75% of today's music enjoyment is off .mp3! Digital success, as you know it, would halt – and for some, so would their livelihoods.
What would happen to you during a social media blackout? We throw some tangible ‘possibilities’ your way:
Algorithms change and become more responsive to your input on a daily basis. That’s why every time you search, the engine you use should get a more accurate overview of what you actually need to find.
That is, of course, if the internet stayed operable.
Google, the king of everything search related, would immediately lose any and all information. Okay, let’s reiterate: they would have mounts of useless data since data is only useful when eyes can see it. Search results, PPC and organic rankings would cease to exist. And so would you.
Passing notes would be fun again!
Tweeting your feelings, asking people to prom or posting your prom pictures? Done. Sharing your status updates would again require notebook paper, Bic pen and the gall to hand it to your high school crush. The quintessential viral video depicting your wild night of debauchery and selfish indignation towards your ex-wife would have to wait for the bar crowd.
Whether you Tweet ten times an hours, or three times a year, anyone accessing the internet reaches out via some form of social media – email, IRC, whatever. And you would not be afforded the luxury to even chat on Telnet, the most archaic of all Generation X chat schemas. Poof. Gone forever.
Financial sectors finally strained?
Amazon, eBay and PayPal. They run the auction, shopping and payment processing kingdoms of 2014. Elance, E*Trade and Enterprise operate your work, trading and car rental sites necessary to run a business and personal savings seamlessly. Without these six key sites alone, we’re back to 1994 – when Amazon was just some lowly affiliate program seeking people’s undivided attention during an era where book digitalization was ‘hip’. Same with Axcess Financial - the ability to receive thorough financial help you would normally get from these pros would be out the window.
Beyond that, gambling, having the means to find finance opportunities throughout the world and ordering adult services would cease to exist. Just on financial terms alone, the world would be in utter chaos - much the same as it would subtracting the penny from our currency spread.
Better approach Bitcoin mining with a little less excitement, and a whole lot more 'prudence'.
Streaming music secedes to RIAA?
The "celestial jukebox" -- a device that gives access to any song, anytime, anywhere -- was long a dream among tech enthusiasts. With the advent of streaming music services, that dream began hurtling toward realization. Now, the race to become the dominant platform is in full force.
Never say never
Although it seems pretentious to assume tomorrow our internet could be permanently offline, it's definitely interesting to compare notes and see just how many people are prepared for today's version of off-grid living. Given the dependency our next generation of techies, teachers and researchers has on the internet and social medias which reside on remote servers, I'd say it's probably time to start collecting Spam - just to play it safe.
Exactly how we communicate, share information and keep up with a world that seems to be constantly shifting and changing will determine just how much 2100 will evolve social paradigms, or erode the need for hard wired internet connections. Unfortunately, the pros and cons were never clearly outlined in the many other updates that have taken place. We may, unfortunately, see an eventual erosion of all that we know online.
Or just site back and watch erode humanity, period.