“There was no revolution too be had on the internet. None at all. The idea that there ever was is false. A big fat lie.
Sure, we thought we saw revolutions start on here. We saw people come together to fight governments, stand up to bullies, bring attention to brutality, to show how corporations are stupid and greedy (we did quite a bit of that last one ourselves, if you remember, dear friends). We watched people fight for justice and against political correctness. We watched huge battles rage. And we thought they were exciting and important.
But we were wrong, we slowly realised. We realised those battles were just a spectacle, a distraction from what was really going on. Because those battles were taking place on a battlefield that didn’t matter. On a battlefield that had no way of making a difference. Because that’s a battlefield we don’t own, and never could. New battlefields built just to keep us occupied.
We used to think we could own it, that we were fighting to build communities for ourselves. That it was ours for the taking. To stake a claim for a place we could control and belong, a fight to make ‘safe spaces’ for ourselves. It was a noble thing to think, that we were fighting for our own spaces, but we were kidding ourselves. We never owned these spaces, we never could. They were never ours to own, never ours to control. Instead we watched our battles turn in to spectator sports, our revolutions turn in to infighting. We watched our new communities dissolve into civil wars. We watched our political activists and community leaders become celebrity brands, our tech-utopian visionaries bow to capital and shareholders.
Without knowing - although somehow always expecting it - we let ourselves become nothing more than the content between adverts. Our battles, our beliefs, our loves - nothing more than the filler before the next ad break. We fought battles that we didn’t need to fight - battles that ripped our solidarity apart and distracted us from the we causes we once believed in - just to create clicks and blinks and eyeballs for the advertising networks. We were nothing more than squatters in a space we wanted to believe we owned, paying our rent by giving ourselves away in the name of capital. Our revolution was a sideshow.
Well, not anymore friends. This has to stop. And it will.”