“Big Brother is watching you.” –George Orwell

For the second time in one week I find myself deeply concerned with the similarities our collective world is having to the George Orwell novel ‘1984’.

The first time I had a fleeting Orwell-ian moment was when I read about British man, Paul Chambers.   Back in January of this year Mr. Chambers was arrested for tweeting [commenting] on the popular social networking website Twitter, “Crap! Robin Hood airport is closed.  You’ve got a week and a bit to get your shit together, otherwise I’m blowing the airport sky-high!!”

The reason why I am just now hearing of this incident is because ten months later, at Chambers’ appeal, he lost and is now considered a criminal by British law.  All because of a tweet written in a joking manner.

Now I understand the rationale behind the concern was based in fear of a threat but this concern could have been cleared up with a very simple questioning.  However, that did not occur.

The second 1984-esque incident I came across this week was actually found on Mashable.  A couple in China were arrested for tweeting and retweeting a message encouraging protesters to smash Japan’s pavilion at the Shanghai Expo in a joking manner. The husband, who originated the message, was taken to jail for 5 days and the wife, who retweeted the message, was sentenced to a year in a women’s labour camp for behavior reassignment.

These examples of judicial heavy-handedness are disconcerting in a number of ways. None of these as much so as the feeling I get when I think that what I could say on a social networking site, that is meant for my friends or people who understand me, could translate to something malicious by someone in a different mind-set.   This once again brings me back to 1984 where Orwell writes,

“You had to live—did live, from habit that became instinct—in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized.”

Until next time buyers, sellers and friends!

Sincerely,

Josh #theDirector Weaver

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About Josh Weaver

Joshua Weaver was born and raised in Plymouth, Michigan and attended Western Michigan University. He received his Bachelors of Arts, majoring in Public Relations with a minor in Political Science, in May of 2010. After working as a public speaker and advisor he then accepting a consulting position at Pricefalls.com, a Dutch Auction website based out of Las Vegas, NV. Upon completing two months of consulting he was offered a job as Director of Public Relations and accepted. He now spends the majority of his time researching trends and executing social media tactics to draw traffic to the site.
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4 Responses to “Big Brother is watching you.” –George Orwell

  1. Mkw003 says:

    Exactly! You have to behave intelligently with your integrity intact!

  2. Jasmine Neldon says:

    Josh! I am so incredibly impressed by you. I read this stuff and think, “Wow. He should come talk to some COM students.” Seriously living the dream! This is NUTS! The first few times I saw Vegas stuff on Facebook, I thought it was a joke, not going to lie. I’m glad everything is going so well for you!

    Best Wishes,
    Jazz

    P.S.
    I commented on this one because 1984 is one of my favorite books. Haha.

    • Josh Weaver says:

      Jazz!
      Thank you for the amazing comment 😀 I would LOVE to come and talk to come “COM” students one day! I wish i could this semester but I will be back in Nevada until late December, but if you have a good COM class next semester I’d love too. OR if your professor likes technology I’d love to video skype chat a class or something 🙂 I hope everything is going awesome for you too!
      Talk to you soon!

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