Beerside Chat -> The Circle
The Circle by Dave Eggers is TWB Book Club’s first foray into fiction. It’s a cautionary tale of social media and our ever-more interconnected lives. Social media has become an integral part of marketing and advertising campaigns and this book is incredibly relevant for all McCanners. The avenues to connect with people continue to increase, and The Circle drives home the message that we don’t always realize the impact we are creating with and for these platforms.
The protagonist, Mae, finds herself at a Facebook- or Google-type company called The Circle. She is blown away by their Cali campus…. fridges full of everything from coconut water to beer to hummus. Gourmet chefs. Nap pods. Game rooms. We get it. It’s cool. It’s impressive.
The Circle begins as a story about an idealistic Mae, impressed by all the great stuff and even greater minds around her who are trying to change the world — and honored to be part of something that feels sobig. But how big is too big? Elements of tech and progress invented by Circle members start off innocently enough: a camera on a stick that anyone, anywhere, can access. Wouldn’t the world be safer if we were all seen? And could be held accountable for our actions? Isn’t it nice for the elderly or the disabled to see faraway countries they’d never get to see otherwise? Oh the possibilities!
Slowly, we begin to see the real consequences of our move toward less privacy, more sharing and the limits of human knowledge. This book is scary in all the right ways. Because a world like this might not be more than a few years away if we are not very careful.
This is a must read – there’s even a little romance!