What is your “digital net worth”?

In totally secular terms, one’s net worth is very important and can determine various opportunities one is like to meet. Most of us are more comfortable and confident with a higher net worth and people labor daily to protect their net worth and increase it.

The digital space seems to be a world which exists in a virtual space and these days it feels even as real as the real world. Many more activities go on in the digital space than we can visualize and so a few days ago, I asked myself, if the world was reset, everything was formatted, erased and the digital space served as the backup, will I still exist? If I exist, how relevant will I be; more relevant than I am or less? What will I be known as? What will be my profession? who will be my friends? Which company will still be in existence, which companies will be stable? And most of all, what will be my net worth?

I thought of various online entrepreneurs and tried to position them in various offices.

Of course Larry Page and Sergey Brin of Google will be UN presidents, Seun Osewa of “Nairaland” will be Nigeria’s president, and “BellaNaija” will be the new “Silverbird” and so on.

Of course the world is not restarting this way. But many things are changing and the measures of effectiveness in various endeavours use different ways and techniques now. If the world restarts as hypothesized here, what happens to the scientist, teacher, professor, tailor, market woman, researcher, bus driver etc who does not have an email address? They might just seize to exist. What happens to that big conglomerate who just managed to have a webpage? They would probably be operating from the roadside. The corporate communication executive who doesn’t read and write his own emails? He will probably exist but not know his own home address. The Governor who calls Facebook a joke? He will watch as his office is being taken by someone else. ..The scenarios continue.

There are various possibilities that technology can bring and many times, it seems as if there is no use trying to keep abreast of various developments and how they might affect us. Of course, in Nigeria, there are many factors such as the absence of basic infrastructure that would determine the adoption of these technologies. However, it will not make sense if in the next century we cease to have any relevance just because we ignored developmental factors, which could have given us a chance at ruling the world. Reading the book “The world is flat” by Thomas Friedman opened my eyes to the possibility of moving forward by technology. China did it. India is doing it.

We may have no electricity, no good roads, no good water, health care, but we have GSM, we have some internet (although faulty) and we can start from there. Do not deny the usefulness of the new media; internet, social media, etc. They have changed our lives.


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