Is Facebook’s Timeline the “Final Cut”?

Is the Facebook Timeline the Social Media realization of Omar Naim’s vision of the future in his 2004 movie, “The Final Cut”?  Am I the only one who sees the similarities here?

robin williams in the final cut 2004

Robin Williams anticipates Facebook's desire to edit and present your entire life history to, well, whomever.

In the movie, which stars Robin Williams (who as usual does a great job with the role of moody, odd, quirky, withdrawn…and doomed, introvert) and is written and directed by Naim, an embedded chip called the Zoe records all your experiences throughout your life.  Although the usefulness of this would be tremendous pre-humously (yes, I made up the word in retaliation for the fact that I can’t think of an antonym for posthumously) – just think of all the marital arguments that could be settled – it appears in the movie that the primary use of the Zoe chip is to produce a 1-minute video of the highlights of your life, seen through your own, now dead eyes, and recorded in Zoe’s memory.

Robin Williams plays a “Cutter.”  The life editor who sees everything the Zoe chip saw and recorded.  He pours through hundreds of thousands of hours of memories and weeds through the chaff to display the “wheat” to the world.  Of course, the Cutter decides what is chaff and what is wheat.

Fast forward to 2011 and we have Facebook doing that with all your Social Media experiences on their new Timeline.   Facebook is the “Cutter.”  But have you noticed that you’re not dead?  So do you really want Facebook in such control?  I admit, I enabled the Timeline and I love the layout, but at the same time I’m aware of the slippery slope we’re sliding along.

Move over Robin, I think I’ll join you in that melancholy and introspective place that has the smell of doom about it.

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