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Death by Algorithm

You vs. the Algorithm

You’ve probably heard about the Chinese Social Credit Scoring System, whereby the ratings of your behavior determine your social standing and privileges in society.

While we are not quite there yet in the good ol’ USA, the corporatocracy has been slowly erecting road-blocks called “algorithms” that can bring progress and innovation to a screeching halt.

Here’s just one example:

In setting up a drop-shipping business recently, my client was subject to the arbitrary cancellation of her eBay account. It seems she managed to do just the right things to trigger the cancellation.

” …we noticed activity that we believe is a risk to our community”

Attempting to appeal the suspension, eBay support could not reveal what she had done to trigger the suspension, as it might reveal the algorithm parameters or thresholds. They are assuming that revealing the info might allow bad actors to game the system.

“…our decision to permanently suspend your account is final and can’t be appealed. “

Now, just imagine the same type of automatically triggered algorithms applied in the form of a social credit score.

The punishment is personal. The mitigation is arbitrary. “Social Credit Support” (SCS) – when you can reach them – is unable to tell you exactly what you did wrong, and can’t revert your punishment because the algorithm is “truth” and ”justice” and you’ll just need to “do better”.

At some point, your rights and privileges might be restored. Or not. You’ll check your score every day. Sometimes multiple times per day. Can you use the bus? Can you take a flight? Can you pay your bills? Was your credit account penalized? All subject to the all-mighty algorithm.

Why an algorithm? Because there are too many people, too many inputs, and not nearly enough SCS personnel to provide individual corrections. You have been reduced to merely one row on a spreadsheet of billions of rows. Your score sits at the end of hundreds of columns.

The algorithm will become a god, weighing your behavior on its scales of (diversity, equity, inclusion – aka DEI) justice, rewarding the good and the bad. You will be a slave to its programming by a cabal of elite technocrats who rejoice in the power they have over humanity.