Safford: Let’s Use Blockchain to Rate News Media

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With the robotic Sinclair declaration being read mechanically across the USA, Americans have no choice but to revisit the first amendment. But how?

The Constitution wasn’t meant for this. We may not have flying cars, but we have a massive network that moves information at such a high rate that it becomes dangerous. Is there a way to fix this without infringing on our freedom of speech?

I believe so.

Invent the Wheel

Speed of information is the root of all modern problems. I understand how bad of a statement this is but take a step back with me to see this.

Civilization has always been dictated by the speed of information. The faster news travels, the quicker the public can react. We can see this pretty clearly by running through a timeline of changes.

After the invention of the wheel and the domestication of the horse, we didn’t see civilizations grow to large sizes until the boatswain’s mastered their craft and large numbers of people could be moved together. Once we had a stable ‘by land or sea’ ground floor society progressed at a steady and healthy rate. Everyone was receiving their information at the same speed.

It wasn’t until we saw the railways burst onto the scene before we saw any major change. From there it was all downhill. Praise be to Nikola Tesla. He’s really the founder of life as we know it. He was so intelligent that he probably saw this coming which might have had something to do with him living like a hermit in a hotel for the remaining years if his life.

Eons and Eons

After trains, planes, and automobiles we had telegraph, radio, television and phone to boost the process. The world changed so much between 1850 and 1950 that you really have to start breaking changes down by the decade. Information was moving so fast by the 1960s that facsimile, internet, and cellphones catapulted us into a world where changes are monitored by the day–not the decade.

We started out with major gaps between inventions that affected the speed that information was travelling. Stagnation for thousands of years saw us eventually changing our entire mindset to look for the next best thing on the horizon.

Here’s some proof. Stories have been written by humans since the beginning of time. The stories that lasted the test of time reminisce great deeds. But very few look to the future. Today we are flooded with sci-fi, space, and post apocalyptic future storylines.

We once relished in the day and now we look towards the future. Why?

The Future is Now

We aren’t content. This age of unrest has us dealing with laws written before any of these inventions impacted life. The speed of information was not imagined to be able to move at this rate. That change in speed has made liability a new found requirement.

I believe that we can classify and grade the validity of non-individual’s voices without infringing on the right to free speech.

But we need to do two things to really make this work. First we need to classify media outlets. You can say anything you like still. They can report any story. Spread any agenda. We would classify them by their one true measure–value.

If we broke media outlets up into bracketed rankings based on their overall value we could see who’s big and who’s small. If you hear a story from a 1-A (being the biggest) and it’s questioned by a Z-99 (guy in his mom’s basement doing a podcast) you would know one thing and one thing only–the size of the media outlet.

Step one is useless without step two.

The Power of Blockchain

Step two is the answer to all of our problems and it works just like the solution to all of our future–blockchain reviews.

I am a huge fan of civilian review boards. I believe that we could create a blockchain review process to solve almost all of our modern social issues. We all have social security numbers. There’s your log in. Log on create a password and review a story.

If news channel XYZ foreshadows a suspect arrest with doom and gloom destroying his life why don’t we ever hear about the result? We do if he gets 50 years in prison but they rarely follow up on each initial story…which if written to get your attention with negative propaganda, can destroy someone’s life.

From there people would rate that story. Any press would be required to link your blockchain reviews similar to YouTube comments (something I find incredibly entertaining). If XYZ said suspect Brown was this and that but 90% of the viewers in that area thought the story was bogus fear mongering and not written from a proper journalists perspective they would get a rating.

Technology is Our Friend

A quality review rating.

After enough of these reviews we would be able to determine how the people feel about each media outlet. The overall process wouldn’t take that much time to set up or evolve into the next step in humanity. If you disagree put down your device and go read up on cryptocurrency. The how. The why. The future.

I think like a practical utopian citizen. I understand that changes like this would be monumental but I’ve also witnessed friends retire off of buying digital money. That’s something your 1990’s self wouldn’t even be able to comprehend.

Be a Tesla. Be an Edison.

Be tomorrow and not a part of the problem today. We can fix this and retain the values this country was built on. Our only obstacle to overcome is greed.

James Safford
James Safford is a member of the Scituate Land Trust and Conservation Commission. He has authored multiple books and sees politics though a bipartisan viewpoint. Send him email at jamessafford@yahoo.com.
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