The Technological Contract – James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez

Like Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Social Contract; we are now bound by something more evasive and more menacing– the technological contract.  Being in society we are not only subjected to the rules of that society; we tacitly agree to all aspects; and every so often we vote to make adjustments. However, does this mean we really agree with everything?  How about unjust laws? 

But if we do not have an opportunity to ‘opt out’ are we still subject to the social contract.  And yes there are those that would say that a contract be agreed by all participants.  The social as well as the technological contract do not allow for us to not participate; in one viewing of the technological and social contracts might say that we accept them by stepping out on a sidewalk or using a mobile phone.  But this is a bit extreme?  

There does need to be more opportunity to participate in society and technology; don’t we deserve the right to opt-out?  The most difficult question is for those that do not understand what they are opting

Technology has menacing tentacles: data mining, databases, tracking, monitoring, un-healthy dependency – some people have a better relationship with their mobile phones than with people; prefer instant messaging to real-time conversation. 

Our technological society has a profound impact on us; the planet; and societies where technological deployment is no as widely distributed as it is in our developed society.  Technology like our society deserves the same conjecture; serious and thorough debate that is relatively absent today. 

© 2008 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez                                                                                                                                       


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