By Barry Lando
A glance at The New York Times this morning (downloaded to my iPad in Rome) and it’s evident we’re already inhabiting a Matrix world. A threat by Julian Assange on Nov. 29 to “take down” a major American bank and reveal an “ecosystem of corruption” plucked from an unnamed executive’s hard drive, has set off a massive internal investigation by a team of five to 20 top Bank of America staffers who fear that the missing hard drive may be from one of their own.
With its stock price falling, the bank has also hired consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton to join in the inquiry. Meanwhile, of course, the world’s media are still feeding off the hundreds of thousands of classified Pentagon and State Department documents, and new revelations continue each day.
Mark Zuckerberg’s personal fortune may have doubled after a massive new investment of $500 million from Goldman Sachs and a Russian investor that values Facebook at ... $50 billion. Social buying site Groupon recently turned down a $6 billion takeover bid from Google.
And e-book sales will surge to $1 billion in 2011, headed for $3 billion by 2015. As for traditional booksellers such as Borders, they’re shutting down brick and mortar stores in an attempt to survive.
We’re on an IT roller coaster. And what lies beyond the next curve? Who knows? Who just five years ago could have predicted the mammoth presence of Facebook and WikiLeaks and Kindle?
As this new year begins, you can either rail against it all—or hold on—and enjoy the ride.
Barry M. Lando, a graduate of Harvard and Columbia, spent 25 years as an award-winning investigative producer with “60 Minutes.” He has produced numerous articles, a documentary and a book, “Web of Deceit,” about Iraq. Lando is finishing a novel, “The Shomer Dossier.”
Flickr / Matt Clark (CC-BY)