The Internet Control System: How Amazon's Unethical Algorithms Structure Your Perception

Energetic Algorithms?

In a best-selling book Power vs. Force: The Hidden Determinations of Human Behavior, David Hawkins claimed it was possible to calibrate the “truth quotient” of a given artifact or individual, empirically and objectively.

Via kinesiology (muscle-testing), he claimed to have found a method to gauge truth (or consciousness) on a scale of 1 to 1000, where 1 is simply being alive and 1000 is an advanced state of enlightenment. (Ref.)

I read the book back in 2005, and as I recall, Hawkins never talked about the ways in which such a methodology, if even halfway perfectible, might be misused, despite the obvious inevitability of that.

I was reminded of the book recently when I began to wonder if there might be such things as energetic algorithms. Are there ways to use technology to calibrate the truthiness of a particular transmission (or the consciousness of an individual) and then build filters to quarantine anything considered “unsafe” for mass consumption?

Though quite old (1995) Hawkins’ book ranked today (May 8th 2018)  6,105 on Amazon. It has 842 reviews. So apparently either there aren’t Force Vs.Power algorithms just yet, or the truth-consciousness quotient of his book, and of Dawkins, is sufficiently low to be deemed non-threatening by/to AI.

Whether or not such filters exist, there be little doubt that their more profane equivalents are now fully operational on the Internet.

A Psychic Control Grid

So let’s talk about Amazon. Amazon is a microcosm for the Internet. The Internet is a microcosm, or facsimile, for the “noosphere,” the collective (un)conscious, or psychic-astral grid of controlled, directed, and “mined” awareness, also known as The Matrix.

Okay, that last might seem like a stretch, and readers of this blog know I prefer not to make overly speculative, “woo” statements about stuff. I am making an exception this time, for the sake of those who are already familiar (and okay) with the notion of a noosphere.

My argument doesn’t rest on establishing the reality of one, in any case. It’s enough if we can agree that the internet is suitable in some sense as a model for a) the world; and b) human consciousness in its worldly expression and experience of itself.

The blueprint for this psychic grid or noosphere (of which Amazon and the Internet are like reduced mirror images or simulacra) has to do with an apparent increase of freedom and opportunity that acts as a “Trojan Horse” for deepening, widening vectors of control.

The Dark Side of Convenience 

For example: The Internet has made an almost limitless amount of information freely available to everyone with access to the technology (which is now virtually everyone). It has also provided us with the means to find and connect to people with similar interests to our own.

That’s two big wins, right?

Now let’s look at an even more specific example, one close to my heart as a writer: books. With the arrival of the internet, rare and obscure books became immeasurably easier to track down, and new books became that much easier (and often cheaper) to obtain.

Then, as was bound to happen in a world geared towards centralization, Amazon became the central hub for book seekers on the internet, and so a single site now dominates the book field, both old and new.

Amazon’s Black Budget

As a not-quite side point, Amazon “reported an annual profit in only 13 of the 21 years that it has operated as a publicly traded company” (ref) and in 2017 it was said to be $7.7 billion in debt.

Partly, one supposes, this is due to the deals it offers on books—deals which have ensured that people rely on Amazon almost exclusively and regardless of how bad its reputation becomes.

Knowing admittedly next to nothing about the stock market, I deduce from this either that a) Amazon is lying; or b) Amazon is funded by shadowy organizations and doesn’t need to turn a profit to maintain its hegemony on the book market.

Let’s go with b) since it also implies a), i.e., that Amazon is lying when it claims to be an independent “grass roots” Net company, because it is really a front for a black-budget shadow organization (mentioning no initials) created for the control of information (i.e., the promotion of some literary materials and the suppression of others).

With Amazon established at the center of the reading universe, what you have is a population that relies disproportionately on a single site (or hub of sites) to find books to read.

It is as if you have lured the whole town into the meeting hall where the puppet Mayor delivers his address, endlessly and forever, at the same time ensuring no one is hanging out on any street corners where the few remaining dissident voices might be heard (trying to warn people not to listen to the Mayor or enter the town hall).

It may have been as easy as that. Manufacturing our mass consent to be brainwashed because it is so damn convenient. And so the circle turns, viciously, and exponentially faster.

The Matrix Has You Because You Want to Be Had

It’s true that those who know what they are looking for can still find it more easily than ever (even on Amazon, except for the books Amazon totally censors). But this is a very small percentage, made up of people who are already discerning enough to resist the indoctrinational sweep.

These are the few who have to whom more will be given: not because the matrix is generous but because they are so few that it is not worth the extra expense of designing algorithms, or the manpower hours, to deal with them. And maybe also because they, we, can be controlled in other, subtler ways.

The rest, however, the many who lose even the little they have, don’t know (exactly) what they are looking for, which makes them dependent on the Internet and on word of mouth to find it, that’s to say, on “customizing” algorithm-filters installed within a tightly regulated information matrix of social networks, corporate sponsorships, and mainstream and alt. media channels.

This collective Faceborg-ed customer can be easily (effortlessly) herded, both away from flagged material deemed too “sensitive” or “subversive” for their delicate retinas, towards “kosher” material that comes with the stamp of AI-approval. Only the Be@st for them.

Information Control 101

It’s easy enough to see how, if this can be mapped back from the present, the future could also have been mapped out in the past.

Once upon a time, the social engineers had a burning question: “With all the new technologies becoming available, how do we control information?”

The answer was, “Easy! Make it freely available to everyone, all of it, all the time, until there is more than anyone could sift through in a lifetime. (Hey, we can even get them to produce more of it!) Those who are seeking will soon become dependent on distribution channels (search engines, yay!) to find what they are looking for, and these can then be adapted with ever-more complex algorithmic filters. This way, the information we want to control becomes not easier but harder (and harder, and harder) to find. All as a result of becoming freely available! All hail democracy!”

Brilliant, isn’t it?

This is just one example, sourced in my own experience as a writer currently (still) trying to make these cursed algorithms work for me. It is also a microcosm of the world we exist in—a matrix world in which nothing reaches us without first getting past the Gatekeepers.

What or who are the Gatekeepers?

This is much harder to say. They are that which is built into the architecture of our perceptual existence, those who programmed the world and who programmed us, both not to recognize when we are playing with loaded dice and half a deck, but to be compelled to play no matter what. (A compulsion that makes us doubly invested in not seeing how crooked the playing field is.)

They are the aspects of the whole (noosphere) whose only game is control. They are you and I, as programmed sleeper agents pitted against our own awakening. The A-maze-on Empire-that-never-ended, within and without.

And (just in case you thought I’d forgotten) it is into this rigged game that JBP, with his very own filtered system of tool-obstacle-based perceptual structures of pragmatic, quasi-Christian morality and his 12 Steps to lobster heaven, comes blazing ~ proving his worldly mettle with a number one Amazon best-seller!

Ecco homo superior. D’oh!

Watch this space. The revelation is all in the method.

11 thoughts on “The Internet Control System: How Amazon's Unethical Algorithms Structure Your Perception

  1. A decade ago a famous and excellent Irish writer said to me that he most often gave readings in damp parish halls where a mere handful of dour, resilient locals would filter in to listen to him, and that it was impossible to make a living selling his work, whereas the warehouses did not seem to have enough trucks available to them to speed back and forth to keep the bookshelves heaving with the works of Katie Price aka Jordan, or her compadres. Heh, such is life. Very few give a damn, about anything.

  2. In 1962, Walmart, Target, and K-mart (the BIG 3 box stores) opened their first stores in different areas of the US. We’ve been herded and corralled for a long, long time.
    Interesting about JBP’s best seller on Amazon. I know only what you have written about the guy but he’s obviously very useful to the controllers (and you are not.) It appears to me……. but the Father figure has been in distress since what …. when Odysseus left Telemachus as an infant, to fight a war caused by the vain and petty Aphrodite. Odysseus was away for 19 years fighting a war and then held as a sex slave to Circe and Calypso (poor guy.) The human story is wrapped up in this journey.
    JBP (and others) comes along and fills in the gap so many of us have regarding the missing Father figure.

  3. China’s social credit system now qualifies the rights of its citizens based on adherence to, or transgressions of, state-defined morality. Central to the control mechanism is ‘sincerity culture’. Which brings me back to:
    “David Hawkins claimed it was possible to calibrate the “truth quotient” of a given artifact or individual, empirically and objectively.” “…Hawkins never talked about the ways in which such a methodology[kinesiology], if even halfway perfectible, might be misused, despite the obvious inevitability of that.”
    The pressing question seems to be whether the hammer falls first in the acculturation of such a thing here, even if no more than an online user’s buyer profile(UBP), before or after the next death wave hits the brick and mortar establishments, pushing more consumption online. I’d wager it’s after- when we are buying online in the highest numbers and never more vulnerable.
    “It is very ambitious in both depth and scope, including scrutinizing individual behavior and what books people are reading. It’s Amazon’s consumer tracking with an Orwellian political twist.”- from R. Botsman’s Who Can You Trust? How Technology Brought Us Together and Why It Might Drive Us Apart, excerpted for Wired.com. Back to you:
    “…Amazon is lying when it claims to be an independent “grass roots” Net company, because it is really a front for a black-budget shadow organization (mentioning no initials) created for the control of information (i.e., the promotion of some literary materials and the suppression of others).”
    Do you wonder if it matters more whether material will even be significantly suppressed OR if that material will be left free for consumption with a commensurate damage to some UBP? Read all the alt.right.fake.russian news you want and watch your Amazon ‘credit’ needle edge toward the red. Roger Creemer of U. Leiden picked the SCS proposal apart, making an obligatory Black Mirror reference and in chatting with Botson(above) quotably called it’s web activity tracking for Red Chinese ‘sincerity culture’ prerogatives “Yelp reviews with the nanny state watching over your shoulder”, also dropping the mic with “I think the best way to understand the system is as a sort of bastard love child of a loyalty scheme”.
    From his paper: “Influenced by Western scholarship on cybernetics and systems theory…[scholars’] regard was given to the role of information flows, not just towards and within government, but also as part of cybernetic feedback loops to create self-correcting responses in society.”
    How appropriate that the ground work was laid on our shores. How do we prepare ourselves for the chopping blocks set up for us all when the pension crisis starts to tank public sector budgets AND contend with a hegemonic buying platform clearly operating with state agendas, even if only obliquely, in that future? I mean, who else but debt holders will pay the piper here? Really not musing for fun and games, this is of personal concern as I’m a slave to a student loan accruing at an incredible 11.875 per diem and effectively indentured with this debt and my job as lord and fief. But hey, fuck Amazon at any rate, yeah? Sorry for your troubles, mate.

  4. Crimeneez! You nailed it with a thorough, succinct exposition.
    Well, except for this god- blessed sentence-thing “These are the few who have to whom more will be given:” Frau Peters in all her Wagnerian red-head way as well as in our English Lit class would have declared, “Herr Dieter, that’s atrocious”. My reply, “But Frau, I KNOW what he means.”
    I only share because I wouldn’t want the initial lofty praise to increase your hat size.

    • To those that have will be given, if applied only to awareness, seems to me a fair and true principle. The problem arises when it is reconfigured into a capitalist (or Marxist) materialist context and becomes about quantity not quality.
      I noticed recently how rapidly JBP’s Twitter followers are growing (on average about 100 an hour) and of course, many of these may be Twitter-bots. This may be a technocratic exploitation/co-opting of the Gospel principle, to them that have will be given (etc), in Rene Guenon’s Age of Quantity (aka the Antichrist). Artificial followers/bumped stats increases visibility, leads to actual followers and genuine stat increase. Except that the gains are ill-gotten on false pretenses and so unearned. This entails disrupting the natural order of distribution, even while inverting the notion of value (ie, supplanting quality with quantity, replacing what has inherent value with what does not)

  5. Well, once again we seem to be on roughly the same page, Jasun. I read your post above with great interest since I, too, have been on the receiving end of Amazon’s algorithmic fuckery—which is not all that surprising, considering that my last book, Crash Gordon and the Illuminati Underground, was a 550-page satire of Jeff Bezos and Amazon. While I was sorry to read about your recent frustrations with Amazon re. Prisoner of Infinity, I was not surprised by the petty ways they’ve been trying to suppress your latest, because I’ve seen worse. Here are just a few examples of the outright hostility toward my books from Bezos & Co.:
    A.) If you type my pen name into the Amazon search engine (Derek Swannson, under Books) you’re taken to a listing of books related to Derek Swanson (only one N in the surname)—even though there is no such author on all of Amazon, so you just get a list of vaguely Swanson-related products and books. I have five different books listed under the Derek Swannson pen name in Kindle, paperback, and hardcover editions—so it’s not like my presence is so small on Amazon that I was accidentally overlooked. It would be nice if my books showed up even if the searcher misspelled my name as Derek Swanson (they don’t, of course…), but it really sucks that if the searcher gets my name exactly right, my books still don’t show up unless you click on an alternative link.
    B.) My five-star reviews consistently get pruned back, but the one-star reviews from people who freely admit that they haven’t read my books stay. Those latter reviewers mostly seem to be juiceless little old church ladies or embittered Scientologists (or COINTELPRO-style hit reviewers, perhaps?) who claim to be punishing me for using the word FUCK too fucking much. This just happened to me again in the last week: two of my older books—Crash Gordon and the Mysteries of Kingsburg and Crash Gordon and the Revelations from Big Sur—had been sitting at 40 reviews each for the past few months, but when I checked today, in preparation for this note to you, I saw that they were both down to 39 each and my overall star rankings had gone from 4.5 to 4. Both of those books previously had review numbers in the high-forties right before I published my last one, Crash Gordon and the Illuminati Underground, back in September of 2016. (I can remember this because when CGRBS got up to 49, I was semi-excited about finally crossing the magic 50-reviews mark, where the algorithms are supposed to start being kinder to you.) Since then, I’ve lost at least 8 or 9 reviews for each book—or maybe more, if they’ve been subbing in one-star reviews for every few five-star reviews taken away (that, I can’t testify to, because I just don’t pay that much attention to it…).
    C.) The reviews with the most likes are supposed to show up on the first (main page) of every book, but they don’t in my case. This really pisses me off, because I know for a fact that it only started happening to me after the last book. Again, the message seems to be: don’t mess with Jeff Bezos, because he’ll mess with you right back. He may be the world’s richest man, but he’s still small-minded and vindictive. Algorithms are just the boss’s whims written in code.
    Those are just the things I can tell you right off the top of my head. I have no idea if the people who try to review my books are now forbidden from doing so. I just don’t think my books are being read anymore, which is why I’ve made the transition to making videos (where I’ll soon, no doubt, piss off Google and get myself banned from YouTube, as well).
    Speaking of which, did you happen to see this clip (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q0aXPCXcCZw)? It’s from a two-hour documentary that I’m getting close to finishing; Matt Alford (author of National Security Cinema) participated in it a bit, while he was staying in my NYC apartment for a few days last month, so that’s why it’s on his YouTube channel, rather than mine. Again, it addresses the same (“They Live”) themes that you’re addressing here (I thought it was pretty cool that we got a direct response from John Carpenter…). It’s almost as if you and I have some sort of a low-level psychic connection going on here.
    (Author’s Note: This was originally part of a private email to Jasun, but he suggested that I publish it here, so here it is.)

    • The same day I heard from you my wife mentioned that the 4-star POI reviews were bumped above the 5-star ones even tho it was supposed to work the other way.
      Pruning the good reviews?! Ye gods of amazon.
      So now it’s 50 reviews I need? I heard 15. Is this like the rainbow that gets further away the more you chase it?
      Nice impersonation of Keith David.

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