Sunday, August 18, 2019

Media Ethics and "The Great Hack" - A Conscious Movie-of-the-Month Exploration

The Great Hack (2019)

During the month of August, you are invited to watch the newly-released Netflix documentary The Great Hack on your own. This documentary covers the Cambridge Analytica scandal and the role of Facebook in facilitating the mass data gathering that may have contributed to the passage of Brexit and the election of Donald Trump.

There are many reasons why we have chosen The Great Hack for this month’s selection. It was recommended by one of our group members, plus we received several other synchronistic indicators bringing this work to our attention. Furthermore, its timeliness in relation to what is happening in the media world right now speaks to the challenge of this moment in human history and gives us a taste of a film attempting to tap into the current zeitgeist.

Together we will explore how this documentary explores the relationship between our consciousness and our evolving media technologies. The Great Hack sounds an alarm that should be heard by all us conscious media makers and consumers. A war is being waged for control of our individual and collective consciousness, with our media, especially social media, being weaponized against us and used to tear our society apart.

Brittany Kaiser in The Great Hack (2019)

This month we also thought we would explore the ethics of media, with particular questions around the issues brought up in this movie and the ethics of conscious media in general, starting with the question: Where is the line for conscious attempts to use media to change people’s minds?

Some people believe that even if you are trying to have a positive impact on your audience, any deliberate attempt to manipulate people’s consciousness is an unethical invasion of privacy.

On the other hand, most artists working in most arts specifically intend to have an impact on their audience.

Many of us in conscious media are attempting to raise peoples consciousness itself, or to raise awareness around certain issues or ideas.

Some of us, myself included, feel called to use the power of media as a force for good, to counter those who are using media in such unscrupulous ways as trying to convince people not to vote, to fan the flames of hatred and division, to deliberately misinform for political ends, or to suppress knowledge or action on global-scale dangers for the sake of short-term financial interests.

The big data driven propaganda machines The Great Hack spotlights are a clear and present danger to democracy itself, and emerging media technologies like “deepfake” videos can accurately create a false visual record of any person saying or doing things they never said or did. We are indeed entering a new frontier.

A war is already being waged for control of our consciousness and behavior, as evidenced in this movie, and the technologies being weaponized against us are evolving rapidly.

How do we combat this...without crossing the line ourselves? The Great Hack eloquently explores the awakening of whistleblower Brittany Kaiser's awareness of having crossed her own ethical boundaries without realizing it. It raises the question: How do we keep awake, aware and ethically grounded in a world of so many blurred lines?


If you have not already joined our free Conscious Movie-of-the-Month Group/Club, you can still join us anytime by signing up for a free membership at the Conscious Good Creators Network at:

Conscious Good Creators Network presents the Conscious Movie-of-the-Month Club with Integral Cinema Project Founder and Executive Director Mark Allan Kaplan, Ph.D., for anyone who wants to use media to raise individual and collective consciousness.