People care about people

What are you looking at? (photo by Sophia Sideri)

People care about people.

People are not puppets (photo by Marco Bianchetti)

Humans are social-emotional beings, and the Internet has devolved from a fun night at the bar with a few friends to a bloody bar fight across the entire planet.

We’re never going to find a way to come together by growing the divide. We need to bridge the gap, and we can’t wait on people & politicians to come to their senses. The stakes are too high and we simply don’t have enough time.

Think about this - we have created & upheld a society wherein being a mere human being is insufficient for acceptance & survival.

“The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its most vulnerable members.” — Gandhi

We all ought to be seeking human kindness (photo by Matt Collamer)

The failure of a human to fulfill their potential is not a failure of the individual, it is a failure of the society.

Throughout the pandemic, Apple pumped its employees full of motivational messages of resilience & sacrifice. The costs incurred to us as individuals was the cost of doing business, and we paid the price. Admittedly, I rallied to the cause. After all, the world was literally depending on us. Not just because the technology products Apple makes became even more critical during the pandemic-fueled metaoffice. But also because AAPL and its MAANG stock peers literally move markets. One misstep could bring a giant down, and the entire global economy with it… felt a bit like 2009 to me.

Schedules don’t slip. No matter what.

Global pandemic, widespread social unrest, historically destructive natural disasters, the attempted coup of American Democracy… this is fine.

Again, don’t get me wrong. I love Apple and I believe strongly in the mission & values of the company.

I just wish that management did too…

Minimum wage in Cupertino is $16.40/hr, which equates to $34k for a person working 40hr a week for 52wk a year. I dunno what a typical Apple engineer in Cupertino makes, but total compensation of $340k/yr seems reasonable. I don’t mean that paying someone 10x more than minimum wage is reasonable, I just mean that it seems like a reasonable estimate of the Silicon Valley pay scale. 10x may or may not be a reasonable delta between minimum wage & engineer salary, but it’s an important consideration. However, of arguably greater importance is the imbalance further up the scale.

Tim Cook’s total annual compensation for 2021 was $97M.

This means that in the pandemic’s 2nd year, Tim Cook was paid ~285x a typical engineer at his company and ~2853x a minimum wage worker in Apple’s hometown.

Don’t silence victims and don’t brush the topic under the rug (photo by Mika Baumeister)

They didn’t do either.

This is important so please listen up - as the fabric of our society is stretched taut, the importance of our online social fabric has never been higher.

We are all connected

Tech Titans pay attention: Stop trying to steal peoples’ attention. Stop trying to trap them in your ecosystem.

Just make great products. That’s all.

You’ll make enough money in the process, trust me.

The real Walled Garden (photo by Jason Dent)

It doesn’t have to be this way.

I am a person. You are a person.

I live on planet Earth. You live on planet Earth.

Let’s imagine that you’d like to communicate something to me directly, not publicly. Do you know me? Do I know you? Do you want to get to know me? Do you want to sell me something? Do you want to make sweet love to me? Do you want to teach me something? Do you want to learn something from me? Do you want to share something with me? Do you want to express something to me?

We grew smaller as a planet but drifted further apart as humans.

Things got ugly.

Let’s imagine that you wanted to communicate something to me directly, not publicly, using the Internet. Let’s say you didn’t know me, but we had some mutual acquaintances from school and at work. Let’s say you wanted to share something with me.

Oh the things we tolerate when we don’t know any better.

Hello - one second - it’s for you (photo by Duck Man)

We have to start by recognizing that there IS a problem and also that WE have a problem.

In fact, we have a great many problems. The role of technology is to solve these problems, not create new ones. We move society forward by moving people forward, not by holding people back.

We improve the world not by changing the world, but by making the world a better place.

And we make the world a better place not by destroying a planet and exploiting foreign & virtual ones.

One man’s trash is another man’s trash to pick up (photo by OCG Saving The Ocean)

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