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7.20.2007

After the frontier settlements

When a barren terrain shows the first signs of organic growth, weed species have taken hold. Other grasses and flowering ground covers will unsuccessfully attempt to take root. The new species die off until the weeds have been through more generations of composting to provide enough top soil for new species to grow. The weeds then attempt to choke out the growth of invading species which are less hardy and drought tolerant. The more robust the weeds are, the thicker the topsoil becomes for the invaders. Eventually the growing conditions are "too good" for the weeds and the grasses and ground covers win out.

When an unsettled region shows the first signs of civilization, trappers, cowboys and criminals are on the prowl. Attempts to establish safe homesteads and quiet villages falls prey to the outlaws. Forts, saloons and whorehouses then provide a stable environment for the footloose ruffians. When polite society tries to set up shop and homesteads, the sociopaths continue to terrorize the settlers. The more successful the deviants are, the sooner they become their own worst enemies. Sidewalks, banks and schools become established in their wake.

When an industrialized economy shows the first signs of pervasive connectivity, web presence has taken hold. Other gift economies and support systems will attempt unsuccessfully to supplement the ecommerce foothold. Cyber citizens will be terrorized by:

  • scam websites and hacker code redirects from valid web pages
  • spam emails, blog comments, so-net invitations and wiki entries
  • viruses, spyware and poison cookies
  • phishing, identity theft and corrupted passwords
  • flame wars, ganker attacks and griefer snark
  • porn, online predators and sexual bait
  • digital piracy, violations of IP rights

The more successful the dark side of ecommerce becomes, the sooner it will become its own worst enemy. Planetary learning, healing and transforming will take hold.

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