For better or for worse, social media is shaping up as the battle space for the 21st century equivalent of information civil war upon which we are about to embark. The population of believers is about evenly divided, each side believing they are commissioned by a higher power to defend and expand their share of the battle space. The goal? To win the hearts and minds of the people. The weapon? Words and logical (and illogical) constructions designed to convince and persuade.
Neither side is preaching to the choir, as it were, and, actually, neither side is preaching to their opposing side. Those convinced of the moral righteousness of their cause …. are already convinced. No, we hold these public conversations to attempt to sway the uncommitted, the marginalized, those who are yet to have made up their minds. And that silent majority has considerable power so don’t play them cheap and don’t play them too close.
There is no victory or defeat on a given day, or even on a given subject. Just the other day I told two friends that they could have the final word, because, in essence, all that matters is saving up the resources to fight in the information battle space another day.
Government itself is divided. Actors on the stage are even divided within their own selves. Let that sink in. Many groups, caucuses that once had considerable power are silently approaching obsolescence. Here today, gone tomorrow. Keep that in mind as you make your choices.