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Digital Globalization: We Are More Connected Than Ever

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Gabriel Mario Rodrigues – Chairman of the Board of Directors of ABMES – The Brazilian Association of Owners of Private Higher Education Institutions

“If a decade ago we said we had the feeling of living in an overpopulated village, today the feeling is that we are all living in an overcrowded theater.” (Dov Seidman)

Mobile technologies are changing our way of living, working, learning, shopping and entrepreneurship. Personal relationships are being revolutionized because we can communicate at any time and day with the citizens of the world.

The cell phone has become addictive because it has multiple functions and without it we do not know how to do anything else. Even Pope Francis complains that instead of paying attention to the mass, the faithful take photos.

Every day we see thousands of jokes on social networks with baby being born with the cell phone in hand; of family or business meetings where everyone speaks on their devices and no one hears; to the “internet of the oxen”, which is new: a recently launched application where bovine breeders will be able to track the characteristics of the best lineage cattle worldwide and to know the strategies for breeding them.

Soon, we will also be able to better control what our politicians do for good or bad. Soon virtual democracy will be here !!!

Two years ago, Qualcomm commissioned an opinion poll to find out from Germans, North Americans, South Koreans, Brazilians, Chinese and Indians what things they would rather not do for a year than give up the personal use of their cell phone. The result is in Thomas Friedman’s book “Thanks for Being Late”: 64% would stop dining out. 51% would give up having a pet and the same percentage would give up a day off in the week. 50% would stay without going on vacation. See the friends in person, about 45%. And the most intriguing: What would you rather give up for a year, sex or cell phone? 38% said they would stop having sex.

The arrival of the internet was something revolutionary, the ease of quick access to information is planetary and is something that really makes a difference.

Information technology is today what electricity was in the industrial age and the internet could be equated to both a power grid and an electric motor because of its ability to distribute the power of information throughout human activity.

The internet has connected an entire world on the same network. There are no limits to the connection of two or more people as long as they have common interests. Distance will cease to exist, bringing many benefits to society as information, culture and education cease to be the privilege of some.

There are positive and negative aspects that need to be highlighted:

Positives:

  • Ease of searching for information;
  • Agility and speed in the exchange of information;
  • Greater diversity in professional and personal relationships;
  • Ease of research;
  • Information and entertainment center;
  • Freedom of choice of access to all who have it;
  • Buying and selling internationally;
  • Connection with other media;
  • Varied content for research;
  • “Cheap” entertainment;
  • Overcoming distances.

Negatives:

  • Not all information has a secure source;
  • The speed with which one obtains information, apparently correct, prevents a rigorous selection of the same;
  • Professional relationships equated with the immediacy of the internet and the possibility of obtaining false personal relationships;
  • Indiscriminate use of erroneous information;
  • Misuse of images and personal information;
  • Open doors for crimes and abuses;
  • Child and adult pornography without restriction of access;
  • destructive and harmful viruses, spam;
  • Decadence of “handwritten” and verbal culture;
  • Inconsistent information;
  • The ease of getting information over the Internet can make the human being more lazy and accustomed to the fast world;
  • Games and entertainments take up a lot of idle time, which could be better spent on the side of a real person or family;
  • Theft of information and virtual crimes.

The positives and negatives are general. We need to go deeper to see what benefits the 139 million people in Brazil, who use the computer or the cell phone at least once a month, and spend an average of eight and a half hours daily exchanging messages (3h43m in social networks), not always useful, wasting time that could be used for self-development for their own benefits.

The internet is the web that connects computers around the world. The web is the way to enjoy the content. The network, with its system of connections, organization and applications, allows the existence of data, programs, information and knowledge, so that people enjoy everything that can be built well for the advancement of civilization. And the use of this is increasingly available to mankind, but human beings have not yet divested their animal instincts for survival. It is each one for himself and there is no God for all.

Human civilization was always built with many wars, destruction, famine, and misery, and the twentieth century serves as a sample for the hundreds of millions of deaths caused by the incomprehension of antagonistic forces to adjust their longing for power.

With all this, it is not possible to believe that the governments of the world, competing companies, religions of all faiths and people can not find by technology, creativity, good sense and work, unanimity to solve the problems of inequality social, health and work. And education has everything to do with this reality.