To say that there is a lot of bad behavior on the Internet is an understatement. And I am not just talking about the disingenuous and unnuanced commentary. While those issues carry over into the general use of technology, there are other behaviors on the Internet that also carry over into general use.

The most egregious behavior is that the idea that the cost of electronic communication is low. While the incremental cost of each electronic communication is essentially zero, the total cost to the system is much, much higher.

The transmittal of messages with low content value has system costs that far exceed the cost of sending the message. The fact that we have set up systems to filter, sort and store these messages is a testament to the nonsense.

Not only do we have humans creating low informational content, we have complicated systems that we have developed to send out automated messages that may or may contain important kernels of information

But we have a self replicating and ever expanding system of sending low informational value messages and systems on the other end processing and filtering and dealing with the low informational value…It is almost like the joke that lawyers create the need for more lawyers…

The devaluation of messaging has complicated everything and created self perpetuating systems of messaging and message processing. This trade off wouldn’t be so bad if this system ensured that no important information ever got missed, but important things still get lost in the shuffle. There may be something in the audit trail that there was indeed a message sent, but this functions as both a cover your ass document and a tool to find someone to blame who should have acted on this information

Of course, corporate memos of the past may have served the very same purposes, but the numbers were smaller. The volume and scale of the number of tracked messages makes all communication a potential accountability trap.

There is nothing inherently wrong with accountability, but more of the accountability is now between messaging systems than between humans.

It is just another proxy.

Categories: Data