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China’s plan to rate citizens based on social behavior moves closer to reality

By Bloomberg

China’s plan to judge each of its 1.3 billion people based on their social behavior is moving a step closer to reality, with Beijing set to adopt a lifelong points program by 2021 that assigns persRead full story

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  • I don’t agree with this. I find it as abhorrent as most of you. But it’s worth noticing that we do this ‘point scoring’ in most societies in an arbitrary and more subtle way already - we judge and punish those who are caught for minor indiscretions both legally and socially and yet are comfortable to turn a blind eye to those who aren’t caught, or just those who we know and like. We credit score people. We base mortgages and insurance on actuarial calculations. We judge what school people can get

    I don’t agree with this. I find it as abhorrent as most of you. But it’s worth noticing that we do this ‘point scoring’ in most societies in an arbitrary and more subtle way already - we judge and punish those who are caught for minor indiscretions both legally and socially and yet are comfortable to turn a blind eye to those who aren’t caught, or just those who we know and like. We credit score people. We base mortgages and insurance on actuarial calculations. We judge what school people can get into on data and social measures. What China is proposing isn’t the right thing to do by any measure. But our status quo isn’t perfect either and when judging this we need to be aware of our sometimes hypocritical perspective.

  • And then add some A.I. to the profiles and the ability to predict behaviors across society could be quite startling

  • One would be guilty of understatement calling this new program Orwellian. The CCP is going places even Orwell did not tread, not that he would have been surprised by revelations such as these.

    President Truman once poignantly observed, “I fear that machines are ahead of morals by some centuries.” We have good reason to fear that chasm is expanding exponentially.

  • We’ve all read dystopian sci-fi where social credit systems drive classes into roles Karl Marx would be proud of. Family licenses, forced birth control, AI driven breeding programs. They are already towing the line with one child policies. We all know how this ends.

  • And more troubling news on how they’ve used the data revolution to institute layers of state oversight and control.

    https://share.qz.com/news/1260996/

  • Doesn’t Facebook already do this? And don’t we all do it with our real-world biases? I wonder whether such a rating system would expose how we really feel about each other? (Not a fan, just playing devil’s advocate)

  • First, I looked at the calendar and no, it is not April 1. Now as this sinks is as something likely very real we must worry about the larger implications if this kind of plan succeeds not just in China but in other countries seeking this type of control over their citizens. We can repel in horror temporarily but eventually we have to figure out how to protect our own society and others.

  • Straight out of an episode of Black Mirror... I could only imagine what happens to one’s score if they don’t agree with their government.

  • This is of course a "Black Mirror" like horror story to the Westerners. As someone who has visited China often, the move is extremely popular to almost everyone I know. To the majority who are responsible citizens, there is growing frustration with some who chose to behave badly and getting away with it.

    Sidetrack a bit, contrary to what you read, there is a feeling that their law enforcement officials, who are expected to be more civil now (relative to their past) are getting too weak and is less

    This is of course a "Black Mirror" like horror story to the Westerners. As someone who has visited China often, the move is extremely popular to almost everyone I know. To the majority who are responsible citizens, there is growing frustration with some who chose to behave badly and getting away with it.

    Sidetrack a bit, contrary to what you read, there is a feeling that their law enforcement officials, who are expected to be more civil now (relative to their past) are getting too weak and is less feared now. They lamented that people who are unreasonable now knows how to take advantage of this at the expense of those who are better behave.

    I am not here to moralise or justify this but simply to point out many things that opened my mind when you go to China and spend more time with the mainland Chinese.

    We all know the danger of where this is going, but what they need is more understanding and less imposition of self righteous western values on them. They have come a long way from past poverty and absolute repressions.

    Westerners who have not been to China think China is a police state where people live in constant fear. Nothing is further from the truth.

    .

  • 1.3 billion people 👇🏻

  • I urge every one to see a movie called Brazil and think about this action...

    🎥 Brazil (Film, 1986)

    https://goo.gl/6EuxQP

  • To me, the worst thing about this is that people will buy into it, and it’ll become another social media platform. Just as how people gain immense satisfaction from likes and retweets, they will become obsessed with their social rating, and the totalitarian state spreads with the happy adoration of the masses.

  • Horrifying. This was almost exactly the plot for a Black Mirror episode. Things like this should be a reminder to Westerners of how dangerous the PRC really is.

  • Terrifying

  • Just a matter of time. Obedience trumps Nutrition every day.

  • Wasn’t there a Netflix movie about this?

  • I watched a movie like this! Scary.

  • Who is afraid of control? What is the final purpose for and whom?

  • Dystopian, yes. But a system that rates people’s social behaviors wouldn’t necessarily turn China into an Orwellian dystopia where everyone lives in constant fear, with widespread use of extreme torture and general poverty. Instead, it would just be “boring and tolerable.”

    People, especially people living in a liberal democracy, like to fantasize an authoritarian regime as the complete opposite of democracy. But remember that for the vast majority of the Chinese population, civil liberties have

    Dystopian, yes. But a system that rates people’s social behaviors wouldn’t necessarily turn China into an Orwellian dystopia where everyone lives in constant fear, with widespread use of extreme torture and general poverty. Instead, it would just be “boring and tolerable.”

    People, especially people living in a liberal democracy, like to fantasize an authoritarian regime as the complete opposite of democracy. But remember that for the vast majority of the Chinese population, civil liberties have never been a reality. For most people, freedom of speech is never as important as, say, getting high-speed rail tickets before everyone else. And remember that the legitimacy of the Chinese government comes from not elections but efficiency and economic prosperity.

    The credit system would be a nightmare for activists and dissidents. But for everyone else — hey, I get massive discount on things just by not jaywalking, how great is that? And what’s civil liberty, anyway.

    Here’s a Vox article that talks about the “boring and tolerable life” under an authoritarian regime: https://www.vox.com/platform/amp/the-big-idea/2017/1/9/14207302/authoritarian-states-boring-tolerable-fascism-trump . China would be like that, but much worse for a few of its people and efficient for many of its people.

  • The article states the Chinese are tired of irresponsible people who abuse the system and are looking forward to this rating system, as their rating will separate them from ”those” people. Man! They all drank the kool-aid! Can you imagine how their government-controlled television, radio, the internet has propagandized them to approve this? Sad! But then if they become the world power in the future; watch out kids! I'm glad I grew up in the time I did.

  • Just think, we used to rely on personal responsibility, and don’t worry the socialist leaders will learn how to fudge the numbers!

  • The walls are closing in.

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