1) Unconscious Unconsciousness
Key learning step: Awareness
2) Conscious Unconsciousness
Key learning step: Education
3) Conscious Consciousness
Key learning step: Practise or Automation
4) Unconsciousness Consciousness
or in plain English
1) Not knowing you don't know
2) Knowing you don't know
3) Knowing you Know
4) Not Knowing you Know
These four states can be applied to our ability to attain Cyber Agency, in this context I define Cyber Agency to be the degree of control that an entity has over all the elements of Cyber Space that they interact with, be they; Data, Things or Services.
Current State: We do not know that we are not in control of our Cyber Space
(ie We do not know that we do not have Cyber Agency)
In the world of Cyber Agency the vast majority of the planet's inhabitants are in the first state, and apparently either have little interest in accepting that there is anything in this area that they need to know, or, sadly for some, have no access to cyber space, thus have nothing to be concerned about; for one cannot have control over something one cannot access!
The first step to the next state is likely to be the hardest, for the incumbent service providers are doing all in their power to keep as satisfied with the status quo. They want to suppress Awareness of the importance and value of our being in control.
Here perhaps, the Privacy Advocates are doing us all a dis-service by distracting us from the real issue.
Author shivers and SCREAMS to himself: "IT'S NOT ALL ABOUT PRIVACY!" But sadly the politicians, (at least in Europe) are enamoured with the idea of giving us all the "Right to be Forgotten!"
(I wonder who this right is really aimed at!) Apologies to Ms Neelie Kroes, but I did try and tell you!
Next State: We know that we are not in control our Cyber Space
(ie We do know that we do not have Cyber Agency)
This an equally dangerous state, for if individuals do not develop a clear desire to "be in control" of their Cyber Space, they may get used to not being in control, and the clever play from the incumbent providers will be the "give us (difficult to use) controls" that we do not wish to, or cannot, use! To be clear, having a desire to "have control" is NOT enough, the desire should be developed for individuals to "be in control"
Who has the responsibility or the motivation to educate
the world's citizens on the importance of Cyber Agency?
(ie We are working hard to achieve Cyber Agency)
This state is probably the most transient and sadly once the average individual understands how much effort it is going to take to achieve and maintain control with current tools and services, they well revert rapidly back to state 2... "Cyber Agency is hard! Who needs it!"
"How to get individuals to the next state?" without them freaking out, will be the most important question to answer. There is likely to be tool and service requirements here...
- Better information; How in control am I?
- Better and easier to use controls; How easy is it to "be in control"?
Target State: Being "in control" of our Cyber Space, with little or no conscious effort.
With the appropriate training and capabilities we can all gain Cyber Agency.
Automation is likely to be key.
e-Trust will be foundational
Cyber Agents that act on our behalf to help us maintain control of our personal Cyber Agency will be common place.
Who will provide them, and how will we be able to trust them?
Downsides of not having Cyber Agency, or not being in control of your cyber space
- You will not know what data you have
- You will not know the import or value of your data
- You will not know the value or capability of your things
- You will not now the limitations of your things
- You will not know when others are controlling your things
- You will not know when others are using your data
- Others will be making money out of your data
- You are likely to lose access to data that is important to you
- You are likely to keep too much rubbish data
Upsides of having Cyber Agency, or being in control of your cyber space
- You will know what data you have
- You will know the import and value of your data
- You will know the value and capability of your things
- You will now the limitations of your things
- You will be able to control who controls or uses your things
- You will be able to control who uses your data
- You will be making money out of your data
- You will have access to data that is important to you
- You will have curated your data, keeping only that with value.
Sadly I fear that apathy will be the largest response, and it will quickly be too late!
For when we have given up all our Cyber Agency, we will not easily get it back!
As the following scene from Matrix shows:-
Remember: Having Control is NOT the same as Being In Control!