My new book Crowd/Control is now out on Amazon!
Although I like delving into practical communication advice, it’s in the service of social change, and I spend a chunk of time thinking about that.
Why is the world like it is? Where are we going? Why haven’t we fixed these problems yet?
This book is about that. It’s about looking at changes in the world in the recent past and near future, with a particular interest in the psychology that’s driving them.
The first part is about Cultural forces. I argue that the internet’s gift of communication beyond borders has accelerated a lot of things. Among those are two powerful mindsets or movements.
Some people have seen the opportunities to join together in common causes and interests, and combine skills and resources to make things happen. I’ve called this the crowd movement.
Some people find the loss of familiar structure (and of privileged positions) threatening, and respond by trying to enforce more structure. I’ve called this the control mindset.
This isn’t any kind of universal theory, but it’s a lens I find useful for looking at events in the world. The two aren’t setting out to oppose each other, but they are pulling in different directions and influencing ideas.
The second part of the book is about Surfing the fluid world. It’s a collection of short articles on a range of important topics, like technology, work, business, health, media, climate and social gaps.
A lot of talk about the future is rather techno-utopian. I wanted to broaden out and talk about the resource implications and social trends that are at least as important in our unpredictably evolving world. Crowd and control are woven through these. I’ve made some predictions, but a lot of the point is to give perspectives and raise interesting questions.
So I hope that has made you interested in checking it out. It’s an easy read and not too long, with plentiful dollops of humour and wordplay.
But there’s an important thread too. I believe we’re in a time of choosing between an upward path, employing the best of our values and gifts, and a downward path where our lower selves drown us in the problems we’ve created. The cultural forces of compulsive control are trying to close off the possibilities we need to follow, and the windows for action may not last forever.
So the book also has a call to action. It asks you to hold up to the light the things those in positions of power want you to believe, and to speak out from your true values for the kind of world you really want to see.
It will be coming to other ebook stores in the near future.