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  • Showing only topics with the tag "progress". Back to normal view
    1. How do you cope with the apathy/jadedness that comes from living in massive, complex systems? (i.e. systems where individual action has almost no impact, but collective action could have an impact)

      This is a question that's been bothering me a lot lately. It recently popped up in another Tildes thread. This comment from @pseudolobster sums up an example of such a system (streaming services...

      This is a question that's been bothering me a lot lately. It recently popped up in another Tildes thread. This comment from @pseudolobster sums up an example of such a system (streaming services becoming dominant forms of media distribution):

      Someone's going to spend $10/mo for the streaming service, the movie is 1/10000th of their catalog, $0.001 goes to the middlemen, who give $.00001 to [the creator]. [...] If I could somehow give 1 cent to the actual creator, I'd have increased their revenue by orders of magnitude.

      In a vacuum, the choice "do I steam or do I pirate" from a single person doesn't really do anything? But then, you could argue, we don't live in a vacuum. We discuss things with other people, which could influence their decisions. There could be a ripple effect, eventually shifting the overall outlook towards streaming/piracy on a group/community/society level. Or maybe, as change gets bigger, it becomes too finicky to really influence with the (nonexistent) power most of us have.

      This could be generalized to so many things, and not just whether consumption can be ethical or not. With climate change, for example, I hear "well, whether I recycle as an individual doesn't really change anything when my output pales in comparison to the waste of large corporations." You could apply this to voter apathy, too. ("Well, whether or not I voted wouldn't have changed the outcome of the election.")

      What do you think about this? Do you focus on the small actions, the larger systemic change, both, or neither? How do you feel about apathy/jadedness in these situations? How much of a moral offense is it to not do the "right" thing? Does the answer change if you're acting alone vs. encouraging others to act with you?

      33 votes
    2. In what ways is the world better now than it was 10 years ago?

      I could use some optimism and positive reframing right now, and I'm sure I'm not the only one. As such, I want to know about some good things! Progress and such! In my question, I asked about "the...

      I could use some optimism and positive reframing right now, and I'm sure I'm not the only one. As such, I want to know about some good things! Progress and such!

      In my question, I asked about "the world" but I am really interested in any example, no matter how global or local. It also doesn't have to be explicitly human-focused, so feel free to gush about the improvements in, say, a programming language you love, or the tabletop gaming ruleset you use. I'm interested in positive examples of all types.

      20 votes
    3. If human population stops rising or decreases, what will be the negative effects for people?

      From the environmental standpoint shrinking of human population is often quoted to have desirable effects, and that's reasonable. But from the point of view of our daily lives and functioning of...

      From the environmental standpoint shrinking of human population is often quoted to have desirable effects, and that's reasonable. But from the point of view of our daily lives and functioning of the human society, what negatives could we then expect? (I mean a soft decline due to lower birth rates, not some abrupt events.)

      For example, with smaller population fewer music albums could be made every year than some time before, and people would maybe feel less inspired and satisfied. Less scientific research, less choices for relationships... and maybe other things? Would being more technically advanced compensate for the issues? Won't we feel ourselves in oblivion and romanticize the "numerous" past?

      15 votes