02 : Theme of the Month 

Each month Intercitizens Weekly explores a different theme taken from the 10 hypothetical questions of The Everything Manifesto, starting with...


Time: Beyond Short-Termness

What if we go beyond the obsession for nowness, newness, and short-termness and then apply long-term thinking to better understand and anticipate the social, ethical, and ecological implications of the ways we are using the internet(s)?

Our sense of time is incredibly malleable. The frameworks, narratives and devices through which we live and understand it, shape how time is used and what we imagine we can do with it.

Over the last decade, big tech platforms driven by algorithms that fragment, capture and commodify our time and attention, have distorted our sense of time, flattening it into an infinite, scrollable present. New models of the resource-intensive devices on which these platforms run are created and sold at a rapid rate, each designed with short shelf-lives. This focus on nowness and newness makes it difficult to think beyond the present and look towards the consequences of these products for humans and the planet we are part of.

At the core of The Billion Seconds Institute lies an important hypothetical question: What if we imagine a billion in terms of time, life, attention, instead of understanding it only in terms of money? To give you an idea of the scale of a billion seconds, the world wide web was invented more or less a billion seconds ago in 1989. And here we are.

It is time to challenge the idea that time is money and understand it as the rhythm of life.