Point of View: Bountiful Harvest

Something there is that doesn’t like the internet

I felt a bit self-righteous — well, a lot self-righteous — the other night when I heard a woman say on the “NewsHour” that Facebook was nothing more than “a surveillance machine.”

Mary’s been off Facebook for the past several years too, though, of course, it’s nice to see photos of the grandchildren. Something there is that doesn’t like the internet. It was supposed to bring us together, and yet it has driven us apart — meanspiritedness (often anonymous) and sleaze far outweighing sane social intercourse. 

The net result is that the internet’s been more of a curse than a blessing, as far as I’m concerned — even to the point where you wonder if the Russians didn’t win the election.

One doesn’t know what to think anymore, or, for that matter, if indeed one’s persona remains intact, there having been so many thefts of personal information on Facebook. Soon we’ll be saying, “I think (I’ve been compromised), therefore I am.” 

I’m beginning to feel left out. So, I’ll say that I’m a glib-eral politically, that I’m a Wondermentalist when it comes to religious affiliation, that as a consumer my wants are few, though I’m a sucker for tennis strings that can impart spin and am fond of tequila, and that Mary’s my best friend, even though she often beats me at backgammon and is biting at my heels in gin rummy. 

(Why is it, I wonder, that while my overall memory, both long and short term, is pretty good, I have none at all when it comes to cards. No matter, soon the basement will be warm enough for Ping-Pong, a game in which we’re evenly matched.)

Back to Facebook, it seems a little silly that I’ve been religiously tearing into shreds bank statements, credit card offers, and the like all these years before scattering them in the mixed-paper bin at the dump when, with the click of a button, information that 87 million Facebook users would rather have kept private is “harvested.”

O, brave new world that has such reapers in’t.