The this topic is because in recent years,

The topic I have chosen for my IGCSE Global
Perspectives Component#1 is Digital World. The sphere that I am highlighting
under this topic is “have technological
advancements reached a limit by which they can be called harmful”. The
reason why I have selected this topic is because in recent years, critics
worldwide have raised arguments on the reliability of the role of technology in
the life of the average human.

The
progression of new technology has been taking place since the beginning of
human history. From the invention of items like the knives and spears made out
of rocks and sticks for killing animals for food, to contraptions like the
first printing press and the computer.

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The
advancement in technology has been remarkably fast in the 20th and 21st
century. With electronic technology and machines being produced and improved
all the time, it was most probable that along with the positive attributes of
these new advancements, people would also consider a critical analytical
approach of the negative aspects of new technology.

Every
day miscellaneous companies manufacture something more advanced in an attempt
to win the consumer war against another company. This consumerism is compelling
the rate of advancement more rapidly each year. The creation of the iPhone by
Apple is an example of this. All of a sudden people could call, text, browse
the internet, listen to music, watch videos and click photos all in one place.
No other cell-phone company in market could compare to it. This was certainly a
positive, seeing that people could use the phone to store data for work,
education, entertainment. But it was only a matter of realization before the
negative claims began as well; too expensive, quick battery power loss and
could a device like this stop face to face communication all together-to name
just a few claims.
Technology will always have negative aspects because it depends on what the
purpose of the technology is and who is making use it; Albert Einstein once
said ‘Technological progress is like an axe in the hands of a pathological
criminal’. 1

One of the greatest negative claims
observed on past years was against the advancement of gaming technology. A
video game called Grand Theft Auto was released in October 1997. The game was based
on violence. It included stealing cars, killing and hurting random people, to
more offensive content like the prostitute characters. Computer games were cast
aspersions on after an incident in the USA with a teenage boy who shot at two policemen
and a dispatcher, killing them in 2003. He had once before been brought to the
police station on suspicion of driving a stolen car, which is something that repeatedly
occurs in the game series. The
media described the incident in such a way ‘Lawsuit: ‘Grand Theft
Auto’ Led Teen to Kill’. 2 Predictably,
the blame was levied on the technology and the companies who created the game. “What
has happened in Alabama is that four companies participated in the training of
Devin … to kill three men.”3 This kind of media
attention can be seen to support the negative claims made by Jacques Ellul, a
French sociologist. He viewed ‘technology as an irresistible, mysterious force’
4 he continued in calling it ‘menacing’ 5 and ‘has an ability to change every aspect of life that
it encounters’ 6. Concerned authorities were inspecting how the game was
changing and disrupting the young boy’s life, they quoted him to have said ‘Life
is a video game. You’ve got to die sometime.’7 This
depicted how this technology has twisted the boy’s mental state and changed his
outlook on life itself, that it is nothing but a game. The technology has taken
over the boy and controlled him into committing such an act of violence. Ellul
also described technology as ‘some kind of living breathing monster, out of control’

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