It has become apparent that our world of understanding has been slowly moving towards a world of transparent understanding. Transparency tends to be a blanket term used to describe a nice sense of open-nes that develops dialogue, allows for insight and breaks down barriers into sometimes closed-door situations. The unfortunate underestimate of transparency is that it inadvertently proposes an assumption of authenticity. If this assumption is conveniently overlooked, any positive ripple effect that transparency could produce would ultimately be eradicated.
Digitally our world has moved from a closed circuit powder party to an open room loud with voices screaming. Everyone everywhere have something to say and are willingly open enough to say it. The internet provides relatively free platforms for us to document our lives in excruciating detail, with listeners worldwide holding onto the edge of their seats for a slight nuance of change, hope, inspiration, communication or anything. The saturation level of noise has deafened many ears but ultimately the openness of it all is pervasive and intense. The dissection of us for the sake of transparency has started with us holding the scalpel and making the first holy incision.
Like any experiment done in a proper scientific manner, the outcome is greatly affected by the variable that is tragically depicted as the witness. We witness and ultimately change the fate of an existence that once was never witnessed. We assumed that our play into the experiment was benign and our eyes could not ultimately jeopardize the desired outcome. The open variable of the witness actually being a malignant form in a controlled environment brings to light the same dialogue on an unintentional social experiment: do we alter the authenticity of our transparent existence by acknowledging the listener on the other end as a bonafide witness?
The question revolves around the clouded aspect that our continued state of transparency becoming a deluge of auto-responses to the listener’s trained ear. Our think veil of openness can be trained and refined, even our unrefined edges have a tailoring to them from their overexposure. When someone accentuates every aspect of their everything, the dialogue can be manufactured into a tailored direction of any particular liking. I write about said topic, become associated with said topic, engage dialogue on said topic and this have spun a cleverly placed yarn around said topic in every aspect of my transparent monologue. Convenience can arise from the fact that truth may be an element that exists but when compounded with transparency can actually become an magnifying glass to just one facet of a multifaceted diamond. We are what other perceive us to be and that is merely based on that fact that living in the world we have created, we are not the only ones living, breathing and engaging with our personal lives. There are witnesses to practically everything that we put on the plate and that can and will affect the outcome of further offerings. Each of this witnesses can change the pattern of our lives when they engage with our openness in its transparent format. Reality is never as transparent as it seems so the mere belief that true transparency exists can delude even the most delusional.
Being keenly critical of true authenticity should not necessarily be combined with the weight lifting feeling that the open movement has stirred awake. There is something to be said to the fact that our collective conscious has gradually moved towards a momentum that is inclusive in its decision making process and inclined exposure to the tight-lipped sections of private sectors in public communities. We have open governments, open videos and even an open encyclopedia. All of these aspects are a direct reflection of our participation. The key element of open participation is directly engaged with the transparency in a singular format. Yet these elements are not devoid of the fractures that can occur from the facade of assumed authenticity. Our interaction must be taken with them at face value for when we put our potentially exceeded expectations on them, we ultimately change them from their presented states of offering.
Our level of understanding has been forever changed by the immediacy and abundance of our results when given a specific query. The inundation of information on anything can allow us to pick and choice how we understand, and why we understand. The underbelly flipside is that it also grants us the ability to choose what we want to understand. The process of response is no longer a linear experience, we have permanently become part of the equation and in direct effect loop back around into a non-linear existence. We systematically choose our direct interaction with our query by own choices of what we want to understand. The authenticity of our experience with transparency is immediately forfeited when this happens. We are becoming a by product of our own interactions with assumed authenticity.
Transparency in digital identity and the internet can be a very confusing matter for the undertaking. Understanding a direct emotional connection utilizing cyborg technology that can start and stop your timeline wherever you freely choose can curate even the simplest of technology users into as cyborg anthropologist Amber Case claims ‘inventors of a famous machine’. We are creating the machines of ourselves, keyed into the information as open as it may be, but programmed nonetheless to portray the image we want. Our transparency through blogs, tweets, updates, photos, anything is merely a simplified creative programming of ourselves into this technological landscape. We are creating ourselves in the image of ourselves, filtered through the digital divide and perceived as a transparent mimicry. The unfortunate circumstance is that the digital medium allows us to filter, whether consciously or subconsciously. We are editing ourselves whether we realize it or not and editing can ultimately strip authenticity down to a unconscious contrived notion.
Our lives have never before had as much exposure as they do in the day we live in. Everything, everywhere is recorded or documented and then critiqued by players that may or may not have any connection to our daily existence. We are the digital creator are aware of ears and eyes playing out our key moves in our daily lives, the mundane and important details are mixed together to an inseparable format. This is new territory and is quickly mapping our wiring to fire in ways that can be stripped of all our normal checks and balances. We are aware that others are aware. We are open to the fact that others are open to us. We listen for people are talking. We talk because people are listening. Our timelines are concrete as far back as a search result goes and our authentic self can be commented upon. Our world is no longer our world and we share our everything with anyone is logged in at the same moment. Our common definition of transparency and authenticity ultimately falter at keenly applying to the new world we live in.
The question as trite as it may be is: a farmer lives her life as a farmer and no one knows about it. another farmer lives her life as a farmer and has a blog that she journals in it. she documents the food she grows. she tweets when her crops fail. ultimately she is a culmination of her digital identity which is a farmer. and the first farmer is a culmination of her life as a farmer. just as a farmer. which one excels? the farmer who knows that everyone knows that she is a farmer, even people that she does not know and this knowledge effects her. or the farmer who no one knows is a farmer but an unknown population can not effect her. this is the question.