Social Media: The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly With Angie Lile

The Most Important Conversations | Angie Lile | Social Media

Technology has always been important to how humans live. Through time, the way we use technology has not only morphed but also become a driver for most of the transformations we experience now. We can see this through social media. In this episode, Chad Lefevre invites a guest who has been in this space from the very beginning. Angie Lile, the owner and President of Wholistic Media Agency, LLC, discusses the growth and evolution of social media and breaks down the good, the bad, and the ugly. A platform for conversations and ideas, social media has undeniably provided everyone a space to self-express and more. In such a big arena, clashes in values are bound to happen and questions of safety, integrity, and authenticity inevitably come up. Angie shares her thoughts on this, diving deep into the effects of social media not only on us but also on our children. From algorithms to AI to fake news, this conversation covers an array of topics that provide us some food for thought on our relationship with social media. Tune in to not miss out!

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Social Media: The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly With Angie Lile

I am joined by my co-host, September. September. How are you doing?

I’m great, Chad. How are you?

I’m wonderful. Our guest is the beautiful, wonderful, and extremely talented, Angie Lile. Angie, how are you doing?

I’m doing wonderful. Thank you for having me. I’m so excited to have a conversation.

Us too because that’s our thing, The Most Important Conversations. It’s how the world socially creates itself. I’ve been excited to talk to you because we live in what I would consider a dramatic unparalleled time in human history where we are seeing the impact of technology affecting every single aspect of life. Throughout human history, technology has always been important to how humans have lived. If you go back to fire, hammer, wheel, or gunpowder, these are all technologies that fundamentally transformed the trajectory of humanity. They seem to exist a bit in a silo or a bubble. There was one major technology and we did that for a long time.

The Most Important Conversations | Angie Lile | Social Media

What we’re seeing right now is technology is bursting at the seams all over the place. This is something that I know you’ve been on top of in terms of your area of interest, where you’ve worked, and where you’ve had your career base for a number of years. Let’s start with the obvious one with you, your background, social media, technology, and the impact. Let’s deal with the elephant in the room for starters. The elephant in the room. Social media is getting a bad rap these days in a lot of circles. I had a Facebook account in 2007 when it first came out. I think it was around then. That’s when I had an account.

It’s a little bit earlier than that, but yeah.

I was a pretty early adopter. I even had a MySpace account. I didn’t do very much with it, but I had a Facebook account. In 2013, I got all rebellious and was like, “I think that all of this is a massive addiction machine. Every time someone gets a like, they’re getting an oxytocin hit to the brain. I don’t know if I want to be part of this game.” I canceled my social media account. I deleted my Facebook account. I had thousands of friends. I had maxed out the friend thing. In 2015, I decided, “Maybe I’ll go back on and maybe I’ll use it for a more intentional purpose as opposed to just friend-collecting,” which was the thing back then.

Fast forward to today. Here we are and we’ve seen the impact for better or worse, and the trend at the moment with the Social Dilemma and all of this stuff that’s been coming out over the last few years. Incidentally, when I watched it, I was clueing in on this ten years earlier but now, here we are.

You’ve been involved in social media since the very beginning. You’ve worked with some very high-profile people and continue to at the moment. You’re a trusted expert source. I say that very reservedly because “expert” is thrown around like a cheap rag, but you fulfill that qualification. You’ve been in it and doing it since the very beginning and you’ve seen everything. There’s my preamble. Let’s start with the elephant in the room. Social media. It’s like the old song from the ‘70s war. What is it good for? Social media, what is it good for? Tell me about it. Talk to me about what’s going on right now.

I fell in love with social media because of its power to convey messages. As a communicator at heart, I think that was its ultimate lure for me. I remember starting my MySpace account and I remember seeing other people posting and getting friend requests. For me, it was like, I needed an avatar to protect my identity. I don’t want to use my real name. I’m going to be super incognito because that’s how I learned to use the internet. I was using the Bulletin Board system when it was still text-based computer programming. You could literally tell anyone anything about yourself and they don’t know it’s true or not true.

In college, that was the thing, to create your fictional character. There are still a lot of people that use social media like that, and then there are other people that get on there and they share everything in real life. They’re sharing their food, pets, walks, and everything. At first, it’s like they’re just trying to get attention, but also it became a journaling experience for a lot of people. Almost in a case where you could go back and see your memories. I know you get memories on Facebook now and that’s a trend now. Google shares your memories from wherever. I get memories off of Microsoft Message Board. It’s like they know that you like to go back in time and recapitulate what it is that you were sharing on social media.

Its usage and its desires have morphed over time. I think people are starting to be a little bit more authentic, but then there was this whole era of the 2016 election when everything went south for Facebook especially, but all the social media accounts where there was prolific real fake news. It was like these websites that looked like ABC News, but they were a little bit different. That shook people up and made them not believe you, even if you’re being authentic. It’s almost a polarization of sorts. If I were a sociologist, I’d be extremely interested in how this has all played out over the years because I personally have been interested in how people use it over the years. For my clients, it’s about communication and that’s what I’ve always wanted to use it for.

I was one of the many who were tricked into believing certain news things for real in 2016 because all my friends were sharing it. It made me step back and realize that even though I have a high-level look at all these social media sites and how people are using them, how the news trickles across different platforms is fascinating. I still didn’t see that this was good fake news. I think that with AI now, we’re going to have to be very discerning, and the fate of social media used to be that they thought Facebook would be the next internet. It would be the internet. It would be Facebook. I don’t see that anymore. I don’t think that it’s going to be the end of all of our conversations here on social media. I think new technologies will emerge that will take its place.

We’re already seeing that in virtual. When I’m looking at people playing around virtually and who these people are, a lot of them are kids, but there are a lot of adults there too. People who are trying to figure out how to use it for their business or for whatever purpose because that’s how they started with Facebook. “I wonder if I can market my business on Facebook. By golly, I can.” It was fascinating because I came from a video production industry actually, where people had to pay a lot of money to get a 30-second commercial on TV, so much money. For a small business owner, that’s a huge investment. They’re taking a big gamble, then they’re trusting whether or not this is going to be the message that’s going to get that return. It was a big risk for small business owners.

I saw that making smaller videos on social media and marketing them that way would work just as well because there were all these people that were jumping on social media and starting to watch these videos. That’s how I got started. It didn’t exist when I wanted to start a video production company, but now it exists and we focus all of our digital media on these new mediums that are coming out, so Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok. We’ll continue to look at how to make content to communicate those messages on whatever platform they’re on.

There are a couple of things here that you bring to mind here. First of all, I think that the objective of free speech is something that most people would agree with. At least in the West anyway, at least in liberal societies or liberal democracies where we value the sharing of ideas or John Stewart Mill’s idea of the marketplace of ideas. Social media presented an opportunity for us to have a true marketplace of ideas. There’s an interesting thing here. There’s freedom of speech, but then there’s also responsible speech. The challenge that we’ve run into here is that social media has amplified the ability for everyone to have a platform now. If they want it, they can have a platform.

The Most Important Conversations | Angie Lile | Social Media

Not everybody is going to have a lot of people following their platform, depending on what they’re putting out there, but that’s on them to control the message and to put something out there. On the face of it, that’s great. We’ve heard from Tristan Harris and his Social Dilemma work and what they do at Humane Technology. The problem is the way the algorithms work and the way the monetization model works where it’s all about attention, it’s the attention economy, and the ability to keep people’s attention. It’s no different than a slot machine from that perspective. I want to keep you pulling the thing. I want to keep you posting, I want to keep you engaged, and I want to keep you scrolling.

Social media presented an opportunity for us to really have a true marketplace of ideas.

You were saying that with AI now, we’re going to have to be a lot more discerning. The thing that worries me is we weren’t discerning with the last thing. In full disclosure, you are part of what we’re doing here at TMIC and growing the mission, the vision, the brand, and everything that we’re doing. What’s near and dear to the heart of what we’re up to here is wanting to elevate the conversations that we’re having and elevate the level of self-awareness that people are bringing to those conversations because it’s in conversation that reality is created.

Social media as a platform is a platform for conversation and reality gets created. There are many realities that have been created since 2016 that haven’t been that great. People are worried about AI. People are worried like, “Have we dumped rocket fuel into this thing that we haven’t even got our arms around yet?” September, I’m interested in your perspective, as a sidebar here. You’re someone who has self-disclosed, “I’m not into tech that much. It’s not my lane.” However, you have a Facebook account and all of that stuff.

Who doesn’t? I guess we all jumped in. My mom does. She doesn’t use it except to go shopping, the marketplace, and things like that. That’s what some people use it for. You are someone who also is concerned with authenticity, integrity, honesty, and these sorts of values. What’s been your observation of social media? I then want to go back to Angie and say, what do we do about all this?

I can give you my firsthand experience of social media. I felt within myself early on that I didn’t like the way that it felt to have all these likes and comments and stuff. For me, it didn’t feel good. It felt almost like an inauthentic validation.

To interject one question, Angie, is it true that when Zuckerberg came up with a concept for Facebook, it was to rate hot girls in college? I had heard that somewhere. Is that true?

It’s entirely possible. I wouldn’t put it past him. This was a college-born thing and it was supposed to be in between students, like you had to prove that you were a student to even have an account.

That explains September’s cringy feeling about the like button.

It could be. I then stepped away from it and then for a little while, I tried to be more involved because I know how important it is for a business. I tried so hard to like it, but I’m not into this whole, “How many views did I get? How many likes did I get?” I don’t need that for me. I’m good. I struggle with it. TikTok then came out. I love me some TikTok. I love the algorithms of TikTok because if you show an interest in a particular topic, it feeds you more perspective on that topic. I love that part. I have set up my algorithm on TikTok to only provide information that I’m interested in. Sometimes you get the silly stuff, but then you scroll quickly past and the algorithm learns from you.

I’m comfortable doing that because I know myself. I’m comfortable in my skin. I know who I am, I know what I value in life, and I’m comfortable doing that. However, I also have a 13-year-old girl in my life as well. I can see how influential social media can be and how easy it is for middle school, she’s in middle school, and she’s my bonus daughter. It can be brutal if you’re not taught about boundaries, but we have that conversation, “Where are your boundaries? What’s okay and what’s not okay? How do you handle things?” We’re having that conversation, but there are too many households that are not having that conversation, and these poor young girls and young boys are feeling as if there’s this bar set for them, that they need to look a certain way, or they need to carry themselves a certain way.

There’s nothing about it unless they intentionally know to look for authentic types of content that’s going to feed them in good ways. Unless they know to do that, they’re being hit with all this garbage that is so inappropriate for that development age for the brain, let alone the personality of an eleven-year-old, but the brain itself because it’s still developing. What is the information that’s being programmed into that brain? As a parent, if you’re not being intentional about that and what your child’s seeing, I feel like we have no idea what the ripple effect of that is going to be. How are these middle schools going to be when they’re our age in the middle of our lives?

You’re right. It’s one of the reasons why I got so involved in my kids’ public school. It is because I wanted to start having those conversations with parents. Also, when TikTok was, which was the app that it was called before, my kids got it. They put it on my phone and they would use it whenever I would let them borrow my phone to play around. It was a lip-syncing app. I didn’t realize that it was connected to a whole community of strangers who could like your videos.

That was a wake-up for me too that apps on your phone even have this component to it that you might not be aware of as a parent. I got involved with schools and it’s one of the reasons why I do what I do as far as advocacy in the schools because it’s true that so many young parents, especially young parents who still don’t know the repercussions of their own social media addictions are letting their kids get on there and use it.

It’s up to the parents to initially make those choices for the kids and that’s why we have to talk with parents. We have to have those conversations with many of them all the time. Even in your parent groups, “What apps do you let your kids use? I’m curious.” See what conversations happen from that. Talk to the school and say, “What kind of programming could you put together to teach parents about the dangers of certain apps?” I know schools would be on board with that because we became the subject of a TikTok trend where kids were taking toilets out of the school bathroom.

What was that called again? My daughter was telling me about that.

I don’t know, but it was a trend. That’s the thing with TikTok. It’s easy and the trends go so fast. You don’t pick up that it’s a part of a trend until you’re hearing about it on the news that the kids have gone crazy again and it’s all TikTok’s fault.

Weird things. My thought on the whole thing is it’s a real catch-22. I have two daughters. On the one hand, let’s say the schools put a program together to try to inform and educate parents on the dangers of certain platforms and what to be aware of. Most parents are going to want to say, “You’re not on that anymore. That’s enough of that.” We’ve created the scenario where it’s the way that this generation communicates and the way that they engage. If you take that away, then what you’ve put them in is a social bubble where they’re not part of what’s going on in society, and that has its own ramifications.

It’s a real catch-22 that this goes to what we talk about inside of TMIC all the time, which is intention. Have a clear intention for what it is that you want to create, why you want to create it, and where are you coming from in the creation of it. That did not exist with social media. It was a, “We can do it because we can, and by the way, we can probably make some money doing this.” I don’t believe technology is ever all good or all bad. It’s what you do with it. We saw that with the Oppenheimer film, which was biographical but also allegorical to suggest that AI is like this over here. What are we going to do with it?

Angie, you’re someone who lives and breathes technology because I’m assuming you see the positives or the benefits of it. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be in that industry knowing the person that you are and you think it can deliver some good to the world. We’ve been talking a lot about social media. We don’t have to stay there. Let’s also introduce Virtual Reality. Let’s introduce Artificial Intelligence. Knowing that human beings struggle to bring intention to things and have a level of emotional sobriety and self-awareness, how do we walk this fine line with these technologies that aren’t inherently good or bad? It’s all about how we use it when we’ve already seen the experiment with social media that I would say has largely failed in terms of using it well.

It’s interesting because I have a broadcast background. I learned how to do broadcast radio and broadcast television. One of the things they teach you is all about the FTC. This is the governing body that is supposed to protect the public from false sales information, specifically to take advantage of them financially. We’re starting to see the FTC moving into the social media space. I’ve been reading about this more and more.

Also, they want to start paying attention to the brand influencer partnership type modality. The more this happens and the more that Virtual Reality, AI, and everything will start to evolve, I still see this shift moving by the public who want “free speech” because free speech doesn’t necessarily mean you’re allowed to trick people into doing something that they wouldn’t normally do. That is a big difference.

What that organization was so good at highlighting was the way the computer algorithm was built to keep people online. It still is to an extent because I went through a whole training session with a very high-level marketing firm. They’re the cutting edge of social media and their whole thing is you have to build the video in the app. You have to stay in the app and build the video, put the music, put the filters, and put the text on there. I’m like, “Of course they want me to build it in the app. I’m on their platform. I’m using their platform. I’m counting towards the big number.” That video that I spent all this time building on the app is getting more reach and engagement. They’re basically giving me the fit of having better results by doing that, so it’s still going on.

When we talk about AI, I like to look at it like Windows. It’s another program that’s a very smart and intelligent program. You can put it on your computer and you can tell it to make another program that will run on your computer. It’s smart enough to create something more of itself on your computer. There are so many different nuances and how that will be integrated because for example, if you go onto your phone right now and you look for AI-generating photo apps, you’re going to find hundreds and thousands of these apps that have been built on this generative AI, but it’s all still based on that one core programming.

That is where we have to focus our efforts as far as making sure that for one thing, we’re using AI to discern what’s real and not real out there in the world. I think that if we have the ability to use AI to make fake videos, then we have the ability to have AI identify when that video is fake. I think we’re going to see this counter-movement of Norton antivirus for AI. That’s where I feel like it would go because that’s the only way that you could keep that in check as far as making sure that people weren’t using that tool to make more fake things and fake ways to get you to click on the link to phish.

The phishing scams have evolved over time and they will start using AI. Soon, we should see hopefully, some people coming out with their own versions of antivirus for AI stuff. That would be my wish as far as that because unless you had something on there that was constantly filtering out the fake stuff, you’re going to fall for something eventually. I don’t care how smart you are, you’re going to fall for it eventually. It’s happened to so many people that I even know.

With virtual reality now, that is going to even be more popular than virtual simply because people can still see their environment and interact with the fake things that are now being generated in their environment. It’s also opening the door for advertisements. This is the future of billboards AR, but a billboard up. If you’re wearing your AR goggles, you’ll see it but it’s not fluttering up the environment. I think that would be awesome. I switch up my billboard filter.

We’ve come a long way from Pokemon Go.

We were driving around the other day. We saw a bunch of people on their phones and I was like, “I wonder if they’re using AR on their phones?” The kids were like, “We know they’re not playing Pokemon Go.”

I think I’m going to watch the Star Wars series again because I think it’s not just for the high tech but also the whole conversation around the dark side and the light or the good side. The spiritual or the crashing of the spiritual world with the technological world and that mashup, we’re starting to see that right now. We’re having existential questions and conversations about the singularity. The singularity is my non-techy co-host. It’s like when the intelligence of AI and these systems basically overtake humanity in terms of their intelligence and their ability to support themselves.

What’s interesting is I’m so fascinated with all this stuff, but I also want to bring an earthiness. It’s like I want high-tech to meet low-tech. I want to bring a holistic, high-integrity, and earthy connectedness to nature component to this so that we stay grounded in all of it. I think that’s what happened over the last fifteen years. It’s like a kite flying in the sky that wasn’t tethered to the ground or something. It was like we flew off because we could and we did all this stuff and now we’re seeing the way that it’s unraveling important and cherished aspects of our society.

For example, you don’t know what’s true and you question even the truth now. We went through a period of time like this historically when yellow journalism was a thing. When the printing press became, like all technology does, cheaper and people could print their own pamphlets and newsletters. It was an earlier version.

An earlier version of fake news.

Fake news and social media. The publishing industry, the broadcast industry, and all of this infrastructure with gatekeepers, fact-checkers, and validation formulas or whatever came into place. That all went out the window with social media. To your point with the FTC, I think we’re starting to clue in. We need to bring some of that back here in order to rein this in and make it useful because this technology ceases to have any use when it’s a completely chaotic free-for-all.

Older people are starting to use it too. They are the most vulnerable because they’ve already been through the rigmarole of understanding that people will take advantage of you if you pick up the phone or maybe you get a letter in the mail. They haven’t necessarily been taught all of the ways in which people try to trick them on the internet. My aunts are older and they frequently say, “I’ve been hacked.” What happened is someone has created another identity that’s identical to theirs and it’s trying to trick people. They never would’ve thought that’s what happened. They thought that someone had hacked their account and was using it on the internet.

We still have this gap. We’ve got people who are jumping on this technology and using it and not fully understanding the ways in which it’s making them vulnerable. I’ve seen this also in Virtual Reality where I’ll be interacting in the virtual world where there’s not supposed to be little kids and someone will come up to me and say, “My name’s blah blah and I live in blah blah blah. How are you?” It’s like, “Holy crap kid. You should not have done that.”

First of all, it requires us to go to places we don’t necessarily think we would go normally. Social media is not something that I do on a regular basis. I used to post a lot myself, but after I went through all this existential stuff, I was like, “I have to do it for a living,” so I don’t necessarily need to tell my friends and family personally because I have tried to rebuild those personal connections. Those are so important to me as we are getting older in life. I know that I’m not going to be able to be on the internet all the time to tell them stuff, so I’m going to call them instead.

I’ve tried to make that transition back to more one-on-one with close friends and family. My sister is in Iowa and I hardly ever get to talk to her. I rely on social media to see pictures of the kids and to stay in touch that way. Sometimes it requires me to go there if I need to if I value that relationship.

I want to ask you a question about that in a second, but let me first ask this one. September and Angie, first of all, my youngest daughter for the most part care less about social media, which is interesting. She’s on TikTok, but she uses it mostly as an entertainment device. She just watches videos of cats and funny things. She’s fifteen. If you were going to give her the option of what to spend a lot of her time on, she’d rather go write a new song on the guitar. She’s a fine artist, drawing, painting, that stuff. She’d rather do that.

What’s interesting too is she’s an introverted person. I’ve heard people say for a long time that social media is great for introverts because you can get that socialization without having to go out. I can see that. Yet, my youngest is introverted and is not that addicted to it. My older daughter who is seventeen is the opposite story. You’re sitting there with her and in the room talking. She’ll stop and strike a pose and take a snap for Snapchat out of nowhere and send it to someone. It happens multiple times an hour.

Is she using BeReal?

I have no idea.

Where you have to do it at a certain time.

Probably she plays all the games. She’s been involved in the TikTok fads and the dancing when it was that years ago, and it’s always been something else. Here’s the interesting thing. She also will say to me, “I’m spending less and less time on social media. I use it mostly as a texting communication device. That’s where we communicate a lot.” She’s not as interested in what it was intended for. My question to both of you is with the teenagers in your life, have you noticed that the current generation, or Gen Zs are using it less than Millennials were and what have you seen in your own personal life too?

At least for my kids, they get their own little text groups going. They are using their phones and texting each other in a group. That’s how they communicate back and forth. If they do TikTok, they’re trying to get ideas or waste time, but they’re not using it like social media. I think they are going to not be using it like we do. Let’s face it, the whole reason I jumped into social media was from a marketing perspective. I want to communicate a certain thing to my clients. I think the usage is different and what technology offers now is a true private conversation between friends.

What about you, September?

My two children are 25 and 21, and then I have bonus children 7 and 11. I can tell you that with my boys, they were not interested. They had Snapchat, but they used it as a messaging service with their friends and that quickly wore off. Daniel and Preston have always been incredibly laid back, even when they were toddlers. They’re a lot like their mother. We didn’t get interested in that. They didn’t find an interest in it.

With the 11-year-old, she uses it more for information because she’s in ballet. She’s looking at ballet dances and different ways of doing things and craft ideas or funny little whatnots. When she’s here, I do her hair because this child has so much hair. It usually takes us about an hour and a half to get her hair done, straightening, and all that stuff. She’s normally not on social media. She’s on Paramount watching a series that she’s more interested in. When she’s on TikTok, it’s more for killing time and a little bit of entertainment, but she goes on there to search more. She uses it more like a search engine.

It seems to me that it’s almost like they’re using it now more as version two of what the internet was when it first came out. It’s a more convenient handy and it’s algorithmically driven at you. When the web first came out, we used to have to sit down and we’d have our browser. You had Excite or Yahoo even before Google and all that. You’d have to type, it was like the magic oracle or the box that you would type into, “What do I want to find?” Sometimes you could walk to the website faster than it could find it, but they would hum along. Now it knows you algorithmically, so it can push the content at you, but it sounds like they’re still using it more as trends and things like that.

I don’t know if any of that is the issue. I think the issue is human beings being disconnected from themselves and others and relying on mediated communication exclusively. Not that it’s a problem. This goes to what you were saying, Angie, a few minutes ago, that you use social media now, mostly to stay in touch with friends and family and find out what they’re doing, especially if they don’t live nearby.

The issue is human beings being disconnected from themselves and others and relying on mediated communication exclusively.

Have you guys ever heard of or seen the show Extrapolations? It was on Apple TV. It’s worth watching. It’s a whole six-episodic series called Extrapolations. For those of you tuning in, if you haven’t seen it, it’s definitely worth watching. It takes you through a futuristic history of the world in the age of climate change. It leaps in ten-year segments. It’s like every episode is another ten years in the future and you see some of the same characters aged and what they go through.

It weaves in all this technology as well. There was this one episode where Virgin of Social Media at that time, and it was like 2060 or something like that. Anyway, we had created a situation with neural links on some of the stuff that’s going on. I don’t see this being that far off. You have your computer in your head now, so it’s a chip in your head and you have to think, “I want to go back and find that picture or that video from that trip that I took five years ago.” You wear these contacts or whatever and you can see it in front of you, like you’re reliving it kind of thing.

Here’s the thing. Science fiction is always future facts, so there’s that. They charge you for the storage of your memories. These are your memories now. The connection between your brain and the servers is complete. This guy can’t afford to keep paying the monthly because he lost his job and everything. He’s like, “We’re sorry.” He has to go make room for the amount of surge that he has of his memories and he has to let the memory of his mom go or he has to let the memory of his friends go to create storage space because he doesn’t have enough storage anymore. Wild stuff.

That’s like the dystopian nightmare where you’ve gone too far with tech, and then you’re too far to go back. That’s one of the things that I worry about with biology tech. I know somebody was talking about this as far as a CPAP machine that you could put in your chest. I was like, “I wouldn’t like that because I’m not going to need a CPAP machine forever. That seems so permanent and intrusive versus some of the other options.

I know that people are talking about that, but I also know that there have been experiments where they have had computers hooked up to people’s brains and had them think a thought, and the brain or the computer completely recreated the thought on the monitor. That’s close to being able to see your dreams, which was always a tech that I thought would be interesting. I want to play my dreams back. I don’t remember what I dreamed.

That would be interesting. That’s the thing. There are cool aspects of it, but then there’s what we know. It’s like a saying. I’m probably going to botch it but it’s like, “We have 21st-century technology and Bronze Age emotions or Bronze Age values.” This is all brave new world as Aldous Huxley said. We’re definitely living that. That leads us as we wrap up here, Angie, with one final thought. We know technology is not going anywhere. We know it’s going to continue to exponentially transform the world and transform the way we live. It gets more sophisticated and more intelligent.

It leads me to the importance of what we’re doing with TMIC here in terms of the work around helping people reconnect to themselves from an authentic place and have an intention from which to come so that they can use these technologies with full awareness, as you were saying full discernment. Simultaneously, I feel like in the Star Wars vernacular, we’re the rebels that are fighting the dark side and the evil empire, because it’s there. The evil empire and the dark side of the force are using this technology for malevolent purposes. If we can help humans connect to their authentic and pure goodness in themselves and come from that place, then technology can be used to massively expand that message and have a wider impact.

I want you to leave us with your thoughts on this, but I’m sensing that’s your take on it. Some people are going to use it for nefarious purposes, but we need the same amount, if not more people, to use it for purposes that advance humanity. I can’t check out of the game because then the dark side wins.

Everything runs amuck if you’re not the lightworker that’s standing in its way. One of the jokes I like to say is that social media could lead to enlightenment. If you could learn to discern reality in your social media feed, then you should be able to discern reality in real life. It’s a mirror of even your thought screen sometimes in a creepy way. I still see the algorithm at work.

The Most Important Conversations | Angie Lile | Social Media

I know that prior to yesterday I had never seen a Jack Canfield ad in my newsfeed, but because I thought to ask, “Is there a relationship between Jack Canfield and Deepak Chopra?” on AI, all of a sudden, I’m seeing Jack Canfield ads. It’s still prolific. It’s cookies. We can tailor it. It’s more to September’s point about TikTok. I know if I interact with the video that’s about this, I’m going to see more of these videos. You see that it’s a tangible change in your newsfeed, whereas, on Facebook and Instagram, you have to curate your newsfeed. You have to hide things that you don’t like until you stop seeing them. You have to interact with things that you like.

You have to train it for a little bit longer time. I think that’s where they could use some serious improvement honestly. If you start a brand-new Instagram account and you go like food videos, for example, they will start suggesting foodies for you to follow. They try, but we have to understand that everything we see is what the computer wants us to see. It’s probably the same thing in real life and that could lead to in life.

Everything we see is what the computer wants us to see.

In a way, you’re looking at social media as a mirror of our own tastes, proclivities, interests, and things, so it’s showing you to a certain extent who you are.

I would say it’s a more concentrated laser focus of a reflection of yourself. You get to see in detail who you are as a reflection, what you’re interested in, what conversation you’re interested in, and what you’re not interested in.

The Most Important Conversations | Angie Lile | Social Media

Is it you or is it that part of you when you want to escape life that it’s reflecting back at you or the escapist part of you?

I think it depends on how well you know yourself and how well you are connected to your values as we were talking about recently.

Fascinating conversation. I wanted to thank everybody who is tuning in. Thank you so much, Angie, for joining us and for having us. I’m sure we’ll have you back and talk about other things. People are going to see you in the work that we do with TMIC anyway. September, thank you so much. For anyone tuning in, if you want to get connected to what we’re talking about doing at TMIC, go to or where you can find more information about what we’re doing. Also, on social media, where you’ll find Angie and all the work that she’s doing behind the scenes to start to get our message out there.

We hope to be a force for transformation and for good in the world. We’re going to be using social media to help get that message out there. Definitely, it has its utility. Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. Until next time, when we see you again on another episode of The Most Important Conversations, thanks for joining and we’ll see you soon.

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