Some of my posts are intended to get you to think. This is one of the most important I’ve done. Parents, especially young parents, pay attention! Future parents too:
This article (please read it all before proceeding!) is the most comprehensive I’ve seen on how psychologists and social scientists are “weaponized” industrially to hook children and teens on Internet chat, social media and video games.
Excerpt: “The parents I work with simply have no idea about the immense amount of financial and psychological firepower aimed at their children to keep them playing video games “forever.””
Another excerpt: “These parents have no idea that lurking behind their kids’ screens and phones are a multitude of psychologists, neuroscientists, and social science experts who use their knowledge of psychological vulnerabilities to devise products that capture kids’ attention for the sake of industry profit. What these parents and most of the world have yet to grasp is that psychology — a discipline that we associate with healing — is now being used as a weapon against children.”
The issue is bigger still. I’ve seen this play out first-hand in people I’ve known — adults and kids who neglect reality for online. This is not a conspiracy theory. This is well-known in intelligence circles as psyops: psychological operations. It is reality, and at work every day online, as it has in other forms for decades.
Psyops: know this concept, and learn to recognize it, because there truly is a war for the mind being waged on you and your children. The same could be said about social media, or 15-20 years ago, online chats. They all can be tools for good…but also, evil and destruction.
Psyops isn’t just a military concept, despite that origin of the acronym, but has been employed by governments, news media, and corporations for generations in the form of propaganda, overt and covert (including subliminal) mind games. Digital online psyops take it to a whole new level. Artificial intelligence, psychology, social science, and neuroscience work together to build ever-more persuasive yet subtle algorithms to hook people — especially vulnerable, immature, cognitively and emotionally underdeveloped pre-teen and teen minds. [Of course it works with plenty of adults too, but teens are especially susceptible to industrialized online psyops.] The best tactics manipulate individuals and the masses without their knowing it.
Sociopaths are masters of psyops on the individual level. Even simple ol’ stereotypical Bubba, the former dropout and current alcoholic woman-beater, employs psyops to convince the woman to stay in that abusive relationship. So…imagine how well that richly funded and highly coordinated teams of hard-core professionals, including published scientists and their findings, most certainly can manipulate children, teens and vulnerable adults corporately on large scales — and as the article notes well, they do.
Likely without realizing it — since he doesn’t acknowledge the deep history nor the old acronym — the author:
- 1. Has stumbled upon the age-old concept of psyops and
2. Is engaging in taught manipulation tactics himself — the long established, formulaic, paint-by-numbers method of Journalism 101 to hook the reader: a) personal anecdote, b) background, c) interviews for credibility, etc.
Point is: it doesn’t matter if you lean left or right, claim the middle ground (which rarely is, in reality), or are simply apathetic. Psyops are being used on us all, corporately, right where we are, right now. Included in the corporate for-profit psyops is media (this is why clickbait works, as well as more subtle and subliminal forms buried in stories, including media bias).
Governmental deep-state agencies are well-versed in this too. China, for example, is creating a systemic Big Brother psyops control system leveraging AI, cellular tracking, real-time big-data analysis, ubiquitous video cameras, and social-worthiness ratings to control the movements and actions of the people. Orwell and Huxley were prescient, if a few decades early. Russia — and yes, the U.S. — are at the forefront of covert psyops “advancement” and have been for many decades.
These methods are only going to get more sophisticated with time. Don’t think, for a minute, that won’t include government and media agendas as well as non-media corporations. Let’s address three other main areas besides effects on youth (and there are many others!).
Societal impacts: Minds altered in the process of practicing these addicting behaviors do destroy relationships on individual levels, and cause a collective drag on society. Twenty years ago, social media didn’t exist, but video games and especially online chats did. I have witnessed this phenomenon with a ringside seat (as a former spouse of one deeply involved), and it can lead to dangerously risky behavior toward self and others, as well as attempted or successful suicide. Permitting oneself to get tangled up in this does not absolve one of the personal responsibility to acknowledge, get out of the situation, and get help to fix their problems, as necessary.
Regardless, the collective societal wreckage of many altered/maladjusted minds is going to cost us all. The young adult who spent teen years game-playing while his/her grades plummeted — even if socially readjusted, still can be ill-suited for college and/or job life afterward, their potential delayed by years or never fully realized. Online gambling addicts, gaming fiends, get-rich-quick suckers, smut addicts, the “likes” obsessed…the possibilities are nearly limitless. These will be a large volume of future welfare dependents, low-paid service workers, prisoners, and/or otherwise wasted talent arising from the herds of people involved.
Science ethics and law: The “weaponization” of science is real and has been for a long, long time. You know this. We have seen it with nuclear bombs developed with direct involvement of particle physicists. We’ve seen it with cruelty to animals in scientific lab testing of dangerous chemicals. We’ve seen it with assorted eugenics activities, from Hitler’s human-experimentation “labs” to Margaret Sanger. Those are tangible activities.
These psyops are less tangible, and as such, more insidious. What he discusses in the article is an example — and may be more destructive today and tomorrow due to its mass perniciousness — messing up millions and millions of minds. To what extent should psychology, neurology and social science self-police this? If they fail to, and so far they are, to what extent should these sciences be policed from the outside? By whom, with what qualifications?
Regulations: These issues cross state and international communications and commerce lines, and have obvious effects on the “general welfare” of the people, as well as Fourth Amendment privacy protection and constitutional separation of powers. As such, federal-level regulation of commercial and even media psyops can be constitutionally justifiable. [It’s harder when the media psyops are jointly run with federal help.] A weak argument can be made that psyops constitute free speech and press, assuming you believe mental abuse and manipulation are protected by the First Amendment. You tell me!
Regardless, it’s clear that some form of regulation may be on the way. Could distant, detached, faceless, suit-and-tie DC bureaucrats, almost certainly ignorant of both the technology and the science behind psyops, make the problem worse via good intentions, as has been the case with so many other issues?
Times are changing, and our world is getting more dangerous psychologically even as it may be getting safer from tangible, physical violence. However, what the “world is getting safer” heads-in-sand conveniently ignore is the intangible: psychological danger, clearly on the increase in systematic ways.