Ignorantly choosing easy governance
07.10.17I have had shorter posts in the past where I spilled impressions on the uniqueness of software as a governing force in society. The post on Choice of Governance would be a single relevant sample. To expand that post's definition of governance, I'll dare to bring in the often-assumed-infallible Wikipedia, and a snippet from the beginning of it's page on governance. I happen to agree with it's statements in this case, so potential fallibility is waived, in my opinion.
Governance makes decisions that define expectations, grant power, or verify performance. It consists either of a separate process or of a specific part of management or leadership processes. Sometimes people set up a government to administer these processes and systems.
In the case of a business or of a non-profit organization, governance develops and manages consistent, cohesive policies, processes and decision-rights for a given area of responsibility. For example, managing at a corporate level might involve evolving policies on privacy, on internal investment, and on the use of data.
It is unfortunate that conversations surrounding governance tend to focus on the more visible forms of government and their use of governance. I say unfortunate, because the most visible governments are not always the most influential. It would make individual choice easier if the more visible governments, such as the state or federal government, were the more influential in society. I believe that individual choice of governance is difficult, not easy. I believe that the more influential governments are found in software related endeavors - and that they are, purposefully, the least visible governance in our lives.
Governance, or the methods by which another exerts control over your life, is easily recognized when it becomes sloppy. The visibility of a well-run governing body is inversely proportional to the frequency, severity, and class of blunders that it effects. How often are you aware of the control that your cell phone service provider has over your life when the calls are all working? Aren't you more likely to chafe at having handed power to the governance mechanisms of your provider when a call is dropped? How about when a call fails to complete because you are inside some seemingly arbitrary 'dead-zone'?
The software you choose determines the governance that is active in your life. The web browser you use, the operating system you use, and even the program embedded in a chip inside your vehicle has been authorized to control your life - simply because you chose to use it. To twist a pop culture phrase, "Have you chosen wisely?" Better yet, can you choose wisely?
I believe that the saying, "ignorance is bliss," has a shade of truth. It is likely that you, even you, my potentially technically-minded and current-event-informed individual, enjoy living your life in ignorance. It is likely that you are not bothered enough when your chosen government drops a call here and there. It is likely that you are not bothered enough when an occasional virus invades the privacy of your life. You are likely not bothered enough with the governing software that you have elected, even when it fails to patch itself properly.
Your happy life of ignorance will lead you to indifferent and uninformed use of software. You should take more care over what governance you have placed in control. Software will affect you. Will that result in a force for lifting your life, or will your ignorant choices find you in a pit of abuse being flogged for having dared to think that you should have a loaf of bread on the meager premise that you were starving?
Have you chosen wisely?
Become informed, and make wise choices.