I have been thinking about social media a lot lately. About how it’s not what it was in the early days – about how we’re all now just commodities trading our information for advertising. How all of these “free” services we use like Facebook and Twitter are really places where WE are the product being sold to advertising and marketing and data manipulation companies. I don’t watch TV, and I have ad-free YouTube, but the advertising is still there.
Like slime, all over all of our connections and conversations. There is still some good I think, on the internet, but social media reminds me more and more of the Frank Zappa song “I am the Slime”. (Which, by the way, I can quote in its entirety, having memorized it as a child. I have no idea why I memorized THIS song, but I can still quote it.)
I am gross and perverted
I’m obsessed ‘n deranged
I have existed for years
But very little has changed
I’m the tool of the Government
And industry too
For I am destined to rule
And regulate you
I may be vile and pernicious
But you can’t look away
I make you think I’m delicious
With the stuff that I say
I’m the best you can get
Have you guessed me yet?
I’m the slime oozin’ out
From your TV set
You will obey me while I lead you
And eat the garbage that I feed you
Until the day that we don’t need you
Don’t go for help . . . no one will heed you
Your mind is totally controlled
It has been stuffed into my mold
And you will do as you are told
Until the rights to you are sold
That’s right, folks . . .
Don’t touch that dial
I’m pretty sure at this point the rights to all of us have long been sold. And yet… I still check twitter whenever I have downtime. I still post and curate on Facebook, and my grove advertises there. I page through Instagram before bed, looking at pretty pictures of fat activists, plus size yogi/nis, cosplayers, witches, pagans, and SCA folks.