Shut the curtains, grab your tin foil, and turn your phone off because we’re dipping into the realms of conspiracy facts (according to Google*). The 61st meeting between the worlds wealthiest and most influential people has just finished, dubbed “Bilderberg 2013″… How very dare they meet up without telling me! So, what does this mean for the tech industry?

The Bilderberg group consists of around 130 of world leaders and exceptional professionals types, in fancy suits, which have been meeting in secret private since 1954 to discuss complex global subjects important to the times. Some see this as a way of bypassing the democratic process while others see it as simply “off the record” socializing. Either way, the attendees are always interesting and now they include a few familiar faces from the tech crowd destined for world domination!

Metal Trilby aside, the attendee list features some very influential people from technology-related companies. It’s not too hard to imagine they may actually put down the golf stick, ice the Dom Pérignon, and finally talk business.

A few people that stood out to me are listed below:

  • USA Schmidt, Eric E. Executive Chairman, Google Inc.
  • USA Bezos, Jeff Founder and CEO, Amazon.com
  • USA Mundie, Craig J. Senior Advisor to the CEO, Microsoft Corporation
  • DEU Löscher, Peter President and CEO, Siemens AG
  • GBR Alexander, Helen Chairman, UBM plc
  • ITA Rocca, Gianfelice Chairman,Techint Group
  • ITA Bernabè, Franco Chairman and CEO, Telecom Italia S.p.A.
  • And some boring talky people from politics…
Bilderberg 2013

Bilderberg 2013 – Image credits: koldcast.tv

Ok, so the list doesn’t really spur thoughts of a conspiratorial globalization under the cloak of night. Will it affect my business? Almost certainly. The three points of non-conversation were:

  • How big data is changing almost everything
  • Online education: promise and impacts
  • Cyber warfare and the proliferation of asymmetric threats

Big data?!?! That must be more important than small data so, of course, everybody on the planet has to know the details of the talks in minutia! On a serious note; it’s no surprise they are talking about “big data” — Amazon, Google, and Microsoft are going with their monumental server farms there in spirit.

So onto point two… what dastardly plan could they be concocting that involves online education? Maybe they plan to combine both the above points and educate developing nations on handling big data? Honestly, I really can’t see a negative to this point. Online education is usually cheap, if not free. Autodidacts and Google go together like coffee and whipped milk (I can’t even tie my shoe laces without the aid of Google. Firstly, to tell me how to spell shoes!).

On to the third point in which I had any interest…
World domination at last! *maniacal laugh*

OK, so I admit that “Cyber warfare and the proliferation of asymmetric threats” sounds scary and I don’t blame people like Alex Jones for crying Wolf(owitz). But, I see two ways of interpreting this:

  1. Cyber war… Asymmetric threats… Aaaahhhhh!!!1
  2. Sir, our websites are getting pwnd by 12 year old kids on a daily basis.

There are many instances of teenagers hacking huge conglomerates and government websites using infantile tactics. You can pick a big company or three letter government body such as FBI, DOJ, MIT, MI5 to find an embarrassing story about data exfiltration, a leak, or some form of hacking.

It’s no wonder they may want to…. Oh, I don’t know… Secure their bases, so to speak 🙂

Joking aside; I think this is a no-brainer as it’s shockingly obvious that many valuable services have moved online, most of which are vulnerable to some extent. High-profile websites are getting breached on an almost daily basis, so government officials and tech/media moguls arranging to meet for a weekend(ish) away to discuss business without it being public news is probably a good thing. Maybe Paypal won’t get hacked and leak my credit card details again!

The secret private meetings seem to finally be sparking the interests of mainstream media, so it won’t be long until they are forced to choose between secrecy and privacy.

Whether you think the Bilderberg meetings are simply socializing for the rich and powerful or a seedy satanic cabal, they’re very likely to influence the attendees. Even better if that means better online security, education, and ease of data transportation.

I think we can all sleep tight with the knowledge that a New World Order won’t be established on Google’s watch. After all, their motto is “Do No Evil”.

The telegraph eloquently summed up my serious thoughts about the politics of the Bilderberg meetings in an article titled Bilderberg Group? No conspiracy, just the most influential group in the world.

 

*con·spire
Verb
1 – Make secret plans jointly to commit an unlawful or harmful act.
2 – (of events or circumstances) Seem to be working together to bring about a particular result,typically to someone’s detriment.
Synonyms
plot – scheme – connive