The Illusion of Choice

Fewer than 10 companies own (almost all) the big brands in the world. What does that mean for us as individuals, our own ‘freedom of choice’, and how we live our lives?

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As Americans, we have always been told:

Be yourself! Be unique! Don’t follow the herd! Be an individual!

Yet, the funny paradox is that the ‘choices’ we are presented– aren’t real choices. Not only that, but we are only given a limited array of choices — we have a difficult time understanding that there are other options that don’t exist– that we don’t see!

Let’s say a simple thing: you want to buy shoes. You go to the shoe-store; and you think to yourself:

Should I buy NIKE or Adidas? Which will better represent my individuality?

But we don’t know the other option: Why not just buy water shoes (what I currently do), search “Water Shoes” on Amazon — I bought this ‘Shark Shoes’ that I wear without insoles, and bought them for only $15 bucks!

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Let me give you an example: I don’t think that people know that Facebook owns Instagram.

Facebook also owns WhatsApp.

Now the reason why this is a problem: in terms of photo-sharing, you’re only given two “real” options:

  1. Should I share my photo on Facebook? or
  2. Should I share my photo on Instagram?

But — they are both the same app essentially!

Of course you can share on Tumblr or Flickr — but you have another illusion of choice there, because the parent company (Yahoo, which previously purchased both Tumblr and Flickr) then got bought out by Verizon (now it is all through the ‘Oath‘ umbrella).

Practical suggestion: make your own website/blog, using or as your host, then install This will give you SO MUCH MORE FREEDOM to post whatever you want, to share however you want, to display however you want, while keeping it open and accessible by everyone; regardless of what platform they are using.

And when you don’t see any choices you like in life,

Pave your own life path


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