Brink, the daily eNewsletter for Marsh’s 77,000 risk officers asked me to predict the near future and what we are likely to see in 2020. Expect more changes in cyber risks, ERM, mercantile activism, litigation funding, FARA enforcement, and an evidentiary backlash to #MeToo, among others. But the change that strikes me the most is that our children – whether in the US, UK, Australia or other historical democracies – are two-thirds less likely to view democracy as essential as our parents did. Democracy – the idea that The Greatest Generation lined up overnight at their local draft board to volunteer to die for – is now at best an afterthought.
What does it mean for our brands, for how we communicate, for our government, let alone the national defense, if we don’t hold democracy in high esteem?
Perhaps the best place to view both the excelling of democracy and its decline is on social media, which has become a free-for-all for enough shouting and shame to feel like prior restraint. If critics rush to give title to an accusation – “your point of view is racist, sexist, homophobic, fill in the blank” – you never get to speak, explain or articulate for fear of even greater onslaught.
Communications is all about context. And democracy is all about the free flow of communications. The difference between mob rule and a democracy is due process and the rule of law.
What’s in store for 2020? Greater challenges and speed where we no longer share a view of even what form of government our country should be or how we should treat our neighbor on the Internet. But forewarned is forearmed. These nine predictions should help you prepare.
Enjoy the read.