Sunday, March 6, 2022


If you are reading on a smartphone, use landscape / hold phone sideways. 

Californication (word), an expression that refers to the influx of Californians into various western states in the U.S. 

The band Red Hot Chili Peppers also did the song Californication about the deterioration of society. The song is about how the world is becoming very superficial and plastic, much like California. The band formed in Hollywood and are quite familiar with the quirky nature of life in Los Angeles. 

I think that a new word is ready to be born: the Social Mediation of the world. Maybe we shall call this process Socialmedication. (Social-medi-cation...)

As of this blog, war is raging in Ukraine. I am old enough to remember the first "TV War" - Vietnam. Before then, war was reported NOT in real time, and very rarely with such visuals. 

The Vietnam War (1955-75) was a time of great controversy in the United States. Cold War tensions ran high as the country relentlessly fought against the alleged evils of communism. 

At the same time, advances in video and audio recording enabled both easier and more news coverage. From 1950 to 1966, the percentage of Americans who owned a television skyrocketed from 9 percent to 93 percent as televisions became essential for everyday life.

So why was Vietnam called the first "Television War"?

During World War II, morale was high. Camera crews stayed in noncombat areas to show the happier, more upbeat side of war. The stories were broadcast as motion pictures shown in theaters. And the newscasters shared only good news and reported bad news with a cheery disposition. 

In the 1940s, Government Censorship over the media influenced this outlook. If the press wanted access to stories about the war, they had to receive credentials from the military. This ensured that the news didn't report anything that the military did not want disclosed to the public. Big stories like the A-bomb stayed out of the news until long after the war ended. The main focus (and purpose) of the media was this: maintain high morale and solid support for the war effort. 

Televising the Vietnam War helped to divide a nation that took pride in its ability to unify. The dramatization of stories in the news distorted the public's perception of what was actually happening in the field. Since it was visible in their homes, Americans were able to connect and empathize with the soldiers more than ever before. The Tet Offensive and the My Lai Massacre, both in 1968. It was all on TV. More and more people felt that the United States was involved in a war in which they shouldn't be involved at all. 

And now, in 2022, the war in Ukraine is not only in our living rooms - it is in our hands. The war is in our smartphones. In real-time. Twitter, YouTube, Facebook. Private websites, with streaming media of horrifying scenes. For me, Twitter has become the fastest source of global news, period. And yes, disinformation and fake news is also part of the socialmedication. Just as TV went from 9 percent to 93 percent, access to social media via smartphones rival this growth. I say, is much higher than 93 percent, and much faster that the sixteen years for TV to hit these numbers. 

Twitter. Facebook. Yesterday, U.S. lawmakers held a secure Zoom meeting with the President of Ukraine. And then, the "security" of that meeting was broken, as U.S. lawmakers posted screen shots and notes from that Zoom meeting across social media. 

Social media - all media - is now one of the biggest tools of any war - on all sides. How many years ago did Putin and other bad actors begin using Facebook, Twitter and other platforms? It did not begin in 2022. The Socialmedication of the world (and of war) began many years ago. 

On April 1, 1968, the day after President Lyndon B. Johnson announced that he would not run for reelection, he stated: "As I sat in my office last evening, waiting to speak, I thought of the many times each week when television brings the war into the American home. No one can say exactly what effect that television would have had on earlier conflicts - the Korean war, or even World War II. If every horror of war is televised, I don't think any American back home would have the stomach for it, ever, no matter how dire the circumstance." 

OK, back to music. Jim Morrison of The Doors once famously said, "Whoever controls the media, controls the mind," and I agree with him. The media is a means of mass communication that is impactful and a reflection of our society. The media is a powerful influence that affects opinions and attitudes, affects the lives of individuals and their perceptions, and affects society as a whole. Jim Morrison died in 1971 in Paris. I wonder what Jim Morrison would think about our world today. 

Maybe he would write a song about it. 

Dream of Socialmedication. 

The Doors

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