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Lokkal: Mission
June 5, 2023

We humans are programmed to identify with groups. Throughout our long history, being part of a tribe or clan greatly increased our odds of surviving. Recently those ancient survival pressures have changed, but old habits die hard.

Freud examined this modern group identification from the point of view of personal psychology. His conclusions are summed up by his nephew and son-in-law, Edward Bernays:

"Continued proclivity to engage in group identification is a function of the enlarged sense of self-importance that individuals derive from identifying with a potentially powerful mass."

"Just as the wolf pack is many times as strong as the combined strength of its individual members, so too the individual senses the potential power of the group, and derives a feeling of potency from identifying with it."

Like his uncle and father-in-law, Bernays has been astoundingly influential on modern society, in his case, as the father of modern advertising and mass marketing. His highly-influential masterwork Propaganda taught Madison Avenue and governments around the world the science of manipulating the tastes and opinions of whole populations.

Today, mass media's manipulation of our "tribal" affiliations accounts for the divisiveness that is tearing society apart. Us-against-them is great for television ratings and engagement on social media. Fox is Fox and CNN is CNN, and never the twain shall meet.

Localism provides a kinder, more productive theater for instinct to join, a healthier, non-manipulative model for our all too human tendency to identify with a group. Localism returns this ancient urge to its natural arena, the local environment.

Indeed, marvelous consequences accrue, both to individuals and society, when we identify with our locale, the bricks and mortar, flesh and blood local community. Most problems facing us today: poverty, crime, education, depression... are largely, if not entirely, resolved by better local community.

A healthier soil guarantees healthier plants, in a way that no top-down intervention can. Mystics have advised us to Be Here Now. Speaking more practically, if you want to make the world a better place, it's best, perhaps essential, to start with your own immediate surroundings.

Lokkal is the interface between the virtual world and the actual community, between online and on the ground:

Online - Lokkal represents the bricks and mortar, flesh and blood local community. Better local communication is the sine qua non of society. Without local dialogue, a free, tolerant society does not stand a chance.

On the ground - functioning as a digital town square, Lokkal organizes and empowers neighborhoods, towns and cities. Then, as a non-commercial public utility, Lokkal's profits are invested in and donated to the local community.

Right now, we upload our content to Facebook. Facebook sells ads around our attractive content and keeps the very substantial profits. Right now, Google sells ads around the search results of our online content and keeps the very substantial profits for its shareholders.

Can't we make our own local social network? Can't we make our own local search engine? Of course, we can, and we can do it better than remote, globalist concerns like Facebook or Google can. The key is local curation. There is no substitute for boots on the ground.

It's a lot of work. There is a lot of content to organize. But "Many hands make light work." Collective effort can accomplish great undertakings, not only in terms of quantity of work, but also in terms of the quality of the work.

When a lot of people each guess the number of jellybeans in a jar or the weight of an ox at the county fair, the most frequent guess is the closest estimate of the right answer. This crowd-sourcing is the great, untapped natural resource that powers Lokkal.

The Large Language Models of Artificial Intelligence (ChatGPT et al) demonstrate the uncanny results that occur when an astounding amount of computer power is focused on one goal. Large Human Intelligence, focusing humanity on the collective goal of creating better community, will have even more astounding results, results which will all be beneficial to humanity.

The dark, dystopian future imagined for us by globalists, technocrats and geeks does not have to come to pass. Lokkal injects heart and humanity into the digital brain, fulfilling the original dream of the internet as an open, egalitarian platform, leading to human flourishing. Lokkal restores local community, reconnecting society to its root.


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