Writing on Air

Writing on Air by Jim Paredes

Fearless predictions

Posted on May 04, 2014 by jimparedes

HUMMING IN MY UNIVERSE By Jim Paredes (The Philippine Star) | Updated May 4, 2014 –

I recently attended a forum on the future of media and its impact on different aspects of our lives. The discussion was mostly about social media; the attendees were interested to know the thoughts of online personalities and their take on the future in different fields.

I was assigned to discuss the changes I predict will happen in the lifestyle arena. Since I had to put on my “manghuhula” cap to come up with predictions, I decided to approach the task the way I use social media — with seriousness, levity and irreverence. I hope you can tell which mode I was in while making each of these predictions, some of which I posted earlier on Twitter and Facebook.

1. A woman will conceive via Wi-Fi within the next five years. But paternity will be difficult to establish because of the Wi-Fi’s lack of a password and encryption.

2. In two years, prayers before meals will be replaced by each member of the family taking pictures of the food for Instagram.

3. A personal black box will be invented that will record the physical condition, conversations, activities and sights seen by a person in the event that he dies unexpectedly. It will be in the shape of a tiny ball implanted in the scrotum. With the penis serving as antenna, it will continue to ping like the real black box found in airplanes for a full month until the battery runs out.

4. People will tire of posting food photos before eating. The new trend will be to post food photos after digestion.

5. Restaurants will start to offer “flavored Wi-Fi” to go with the food you order.

6. If Andy Warhol predicted in the ‘60s that everyone would be famous for at least 15 minutes, in the near future, everyone will be famous or infamous for at least a tweet, an FB post, or a blog entry. With the tools of social media available to all, each person in the world will potentially be a power center of influence, albeit fleeting.

7. A great number of people will voluntarily upload sex videos to end the anxiety about personal scandal. If everyone uploads his or her own sex video, it’s one less worry off people’s backs. What else can one possibly do to shock the public after that?

8. We will see the world as borderless. Because most everyone will have become a netizen in the next five years, we will have emotional investments in places and peoples we used to not even think about, much less cared for. We will finally realize that we are all part of one humanity.

9. Chaperoning young teens when they go out on dates will be a thing of the past. Instead, strict parents will monitor their children’s body parts by embedding them with CCTV cameras to protect their chastity and to monitor overall sexual behavior.

10. Sadly, we will give up more and more of our privacy. But the issue will be reframed into one of “personal sovereignty” and this will capture the imagination of a lot of people. (I am not sure if I read this somewhere so please consider this as a disclaimer, just in case.)

11. Safe sex advocates will realize that online sex is, in fact, the safest sex of all and will ask for its legalization.

12. A cult will rise that will look at the present times as the end times and interpret the trials and condemnation of famous people like Oscar Pistorius, et al as the beginning of Judgment Day where everyone’s sins will be known and judged by everyone else.

13. People will be able to have complete romantic relationships without ever having met. They will fall in love with projections they and their partners send out through social media. But their relationships can also end just as quickly with a delete button when the “thrill” is gone.

14. The battle about when to use and not use social media in public will continue to be endlessly debated. Therefore, there will be as many “free” Wi-Fi zones everywhere as there will be WiFi-free zones.

15. Social media will force major religions to overhaul their practices and even some of their beliefs. There will be “monks without monasteries,” as intuitive healer and writer Carolyn Myss describes people who are not religious but highly spiritual. Literalism and dogmatism will eventually give way to the more persuasive, more engaging power of the symbolic that people will appreciate more.

16. It has always been my belief that the Internet is the physical infrastructure we need to allow people everywhere to experience the Oneness we all long for. The religions that embody the spirit of Oneness and consistently pass on the experience to humanity in a renewable way will be the dominant religion of the future.

17. When famous people die, their social media accounts will be auctioned off like real properties and personal belongings, so that buyers who are fans can continue running them.

18. Lastly, the Google Glass gadget will be extremely popular and will evolve into “Google Skin.” This gadget, which will cover the entire body, can be instructed verbally to make the wearer feel many sensations that a real body can, and more. For example, you can order it to make your nose experience certain smells like your favorite cologne.

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