Episode 224 - Conscientious Futures
Published November 19, 2015
SPECIAL GUEST: Robert Gordon (Future Conscience). In this episode, we talk with author, futurist and blogger Robert Gordon from the UK. From self-publishing, Creative Commons and Open-Source software, to corporate sovereignty, ethics, identity and neurology, how is the human species rewriting our stories and reshaping our future? Join us and find out. Recorded 11/15/2015.
Mike & Matt's Recommended Reading:
Future Conscience website
Future Conscience on Twitter
Podcast Futures: Interview with the Robot Overlordz, an interview that Robert did with us on the Future Conscience site
More coming soon...
Alpha: Welcome to another episode of Robot Overlordz, episode #224. On the show we take a look at how society is changing, everything from pop culture reviews to political commentary, technology trends to social norms, all in about thirty minutes or less, every Tuesday and Thursday.
Mike Johnston: Greetings cyborgs, robots, and natural humans. I’m Mike Johnston.
Matt Bolton: And I’m Matt Bolton.
MJ: And joining us today is Robert Gordon. Robert, thanks for joining us.
Robert Gordon: Thank you for having me, it’s a great pleasure.
MJ: So our standard question that we like to start with is could you tell our listeners a little bit about your background?
RG: Yeah, certainly. I mean, it’s kind of everybody’s background really, isn’t it? Grew up having a love of science fiction and fantasy and the future. And I’m Australian, there’s a slight hint in my accent, you might’ve picked that up, but currently living in the UK, been over here for nine years now, did the traditional kind of, “Just going over here for a year to study, nobody say goodbye, nobody have any going away parties,” and never went home. So, I think that’s a common story. Really, I mean my background is as an anthropologist and also in cultural heritage, and I work as the manager of St. Paul’s Institute out of St. Paul’s cathedral in London, it’s an organization that really focuses on the role of finance and economics and the construction of society and trying to find a place for these things that puts human well-being and flourishing back into the forefront. So that’s my kind of day job, and there’s lots of interesting areas in that which are relevant to kind of futurist thinking. But then as a kind of moonlighting as a futurist, if you could call it that. I’m not a “professional futurist,” but for the last six years have been writing a blog called “Future Conscience,” which has gained some traction over time, and really looking at these kind of big questions… What does human progress mean? What do we want to be in the future? How do we get there? What pitfalls might we want to avoid? All the kind of ethics of future thinking is what really interested me. So that’s my kind of potted history, really. And then, you know, top all of that off with self-publishing my first kind of science fiction novel, “When Winter Calls,” which tries to combine all of these wonderful themes into something that I think many of us want to do, and after many years of aspiring to be a writer, I actually finally got around to doing it, which was personally satisfying. They don’t tell you, actually, that writing really begins once you publish, because then comes all the kind of promotional stuff and actually getting your work out there. So, I kind of didn’t really realize that the struggle only really begins when you’re done with the book, but it’s nice to be in this stage and it’s great that you guys thought it was all interesting enough as a package to have me on.
MJ: Oh yeah, definitely. Congratulations on finishing the book. You know, I’ve had some similar ambitions myself over the years and I know how hard it is to get started, ‘cause I still haven’t started. I’m curious, did you use any of the internet phenomenon, like the “November Novel Writing Month” or anything like that to motivate you, or did you just do this in your spare time?
RG: Yeah, I mean, I’ve been a fan of NaNoWriMo for a while and used that a few times to kind of kickstart my blog, you know. When you’re doing a blog, as everybody knows, the hardest part is to just keep doing it. And they always say if you can last six months, then that’s a go. When you last six years, you realize that you have to find motivation at different points in time. So, those kind of things, they really do keep you focused. And also, there’s just communities of people out there, you meet people on Twitter, like yourselves, and others who’ve done independent sci-fi movies and everything else, and that kind of… I mean, we’re all just here in our own kind of creative juices aren’t we, and I think that’s really inspiring. So yeah, I mean it certainly factored in there. I think it took two and a half years in total, from kind of plotting out the first draft of the book to finally pushing that button and publishing it. So, NaNoWriMo was a part of that, but, you know, it was a long haul, really.
MJ: If you had to sort of describe at a high level what the book is really dealing with, how would you describe the story?
RG: Yeah so, I mean, I was always fascinated with notions of corporate sovereignty, and in particular these kind of corporate enclaves out in the ocean. So, “When Winter Calls” is set on a city corporation or a city corp called Caldera, which is essentially a city out in the middle of the ocean, which means international jurisdictions, which means it’s the perfect place to have a very high-level secretive research and development facility and have tens of thousands of technicians there working on the latest things that corporations may not want to fall under various regulations or jurisdictions. So, the setting itself was kind of what kickstarted the notion of the book, and what do these semi-utopian but also kind of corporate dystopian settings say about where we’re heading? And then combined a lot of that with just a good old-fashioned kind of science fiction thriller, you know? My wife’s a neuroscientist and so I’ve also been very interested in a lot of the kind of neuroscience side of these things and the kind of brain/computer interface, the smartphones are starting to be an extension of this and our identities, and what would it mean to actually plug ourselves in? This isn’t a wholly original theme obviously, but what does it mean when someone’s developing these neural interfaces, and what might go wrong when they do? So, the book itself is kind of very character-driven and it’s a slow burn, mostly kind of driven by the setting, the isolation; obviously given the title, there’s a lot of winter and snow involved. So there’s kind of degrees there about what it means to have corporate isolation and corporate sovereignty and what it might do to the identity of the employees and their aspirations.
MJ: Is the book self-contained or are you planning, like, follow-ups to it?
RG: No, it’s self-contained. It’s one of these funny things, you know. In the self-publishing world at the moment, basically everybody says unless you write a kind of series of books and generally make it a young adult sci-fi or fantasy, you’re not really going to get anywhere. But you know what? I’m a massive fan of Philip K. Dick and others, and they wrote self-contained novels, didn’t they? Because each one was trying to say something and was really a kind of commentary on various aspects within a certain story, which is usually centered around one or two everyday characters. And I didn’t really want to succumb to just what makes money in this day and age, breaking it up into seven pieces and delivering one every three months that’s only kind of 150-pages long or something. So I really did go for a self-contained novel, and the next one will be self-contained, the others that I want to do in the future are all self-contained. So that was a conscious decision, and I think to, if I may possibly succumb to my own hubris, to put myself more into that tradition of the sci-fi writers that we all look up to, who I feel most of whom were writing in that style.
MJ: Well I think you may have tapped into at least some sentiment. I’m in a sci-fi and fantasy book club and we’re constantly looking for books, almost all of them now are series, or even the ones that started out as a good self-contained story suddenly becomes a series. So, I think there’s a hunger for that kind of writing.
RG: A “hunger” for those kind of “games,” you might say. [laughs] Sorry, that was a very bad joke.
RG: Yeah, I mean it’s…I think so much the publishing industry and the entertainment industry as a whole has just become quite cynical, you know? I mean they don’t really want to take a shot on super original content unless it has the capacity to be a series, unless it has the capacity to draw out that monetization process. That’s where self-publishing comes in, isn’t it? Because it allows us to speak directly to one another, and to find those book clubs and podcasts, and bloggers and everything else, and we can kind of do this from the ground up.
MB: How has your experience been since you self-published? Would you do that again?
RG: Yeah, I mean I definitely would. You certainly learn a few tricks of the trade, as they say. I mean, it is one of those things where you actually realize that having written a book is really just the beginning of the struggle, and having a much more laid-out promotional and marketing plan probably would’ve been a smarter move. But we’re all busy people, we’ve got day jobs, we’ve got other things, we’ve got families and everything else. So there’s certainly a degree to which I could’ve planned out the rollout of this to be a bit more comprehensive, shall we say. But then it’s part of everything that I’m doing as a whole. It’s not just the one thing and if it doesn’t work then everything else falls apart, it’s just an extension of it all. I’m definitely keen to find more time to do similar things in the future. And you learn things along the way, and actually you make really, really good connections with people, so now I know who to go to for cover art, I know who to go to for formatting and layout… Those kinds of things you have to discover along the way certainly become easier over time as you start to build up friendships and relationships with people who are doing similar things.
MB: If you could give out one piece of advice for somebody who’s trying to self-publish, is there anything in particular?
RG: A lot of this is the general stuff: don’t go out there unless you’ve edited it about ten different times and made sure that you’ve got someone else other than your mom to tell you it’s amazing; you know, actually get beta readers; if you can afford it, get a proper editor. Luckily I did have a friend of mine who’s a literature PhD and others who were able to do that for me, so I’m very grateful to have that support. But just that level of polish I think is key, because part of the issue we’re still facing with the self-publishing industry is just it’s so easily dismissed because people will open it up and there’s spelling mistakes and formatting errors and there’s big gaps in the pages when they should’ve been properly formatted and aligned. And I’m not saying that this is perfect, don’t get me wrong, but I think that’s really key, is you’ve got to have that level of polish, it’s got to be as indistinguishable from a traditionally-published book as possible or people will just almost immediately write it off as amateur, and we’re trying to show that this is as serious as any of the other authors out there. And in many cases, a lot of these self-published books are a heck of a lot better aren’t they, because they can go into areas that mainstream publishers wouldn’t take a punt on, so.
MJ: Well they certainly have an authenticity and sometimes interesting themes that you wouldn’t get in some of the more silo’d and mainstream publishing. So, Robert, I wanted to maybe tease out a little bit, you mentioned in sort of the theme of the book that whole as technology is kind of moving into our bodies and corporations are owning this, has that really been a theme in the book?
RG: Yeah, it’s massively a theme in the book. So, you have that corporate sovereignty, but then it’s combined with these transhumanist issues, and futurists are well-versed with this notion of transhumanism but I think one of the things we don’t ask is who gets to decide the trajectory that that takes? We kind of are excited for these unknown moments of various kinds of different transhuman singularities or transition periods, but rarely do we see a lot of conversation in the futurist sphere which is asking well who are we handing over the very existence of humanity to? I mean there’s certain movies, “Ex Machina,” which came out recently, I think did that very well. Are we going to say that the next level of AI or human evolution or whatever is going to be up the hands of these kind of Google mega conglomerates, or Facebooks or Apples? Are they really going to decide what the future of our biological evolution is? I think that’s a question that we’re almost stumbling into inevitably, but I think there has to be some resistance to what the answer is going to be about that, because we have to be very careful because we already know that the way that these organizations work is to siphon off their product so that they can monetize, so that they can profit off it, so that they can grow from it, that’s their kind of raison d’etre. When that comes to the literal evolution of the human species, I think we need to be asking a few more heated questions around those issues. So that’s definitely a theme in the book.
MJ: Yeah, that’s a theme that’s interested me a lot lately. I’ve kind of had a little bit of a back and forth with the Singularity Bros podcast on the whole idea of ownership and access and control. That was really more specifically about media, but if you really think about technology actually becoming a part of your body and becoming a part of your brain, I mean handing over sort of the keys to that kind of system to a corporation that might decide, “You know what? Today you’re going to be Twinkies” or something like that, that gets kind of disturbing. And certainly, Facebook has been one of Matt and I’s favorite punching bags, as far as their ethics. It seems like that presents some pretty big issues and problems that really, as a society, we’re not, as a whole, talking about enough yet, it seems like.
RG: Absolutely. And I mean, look, we know that Facebook had to come out and apologize for running psychological testing on its users. I mean this is something where they were manipulating the emotions of their users and felt that that was just within the means of their market research. Now, I mean, and I’m not one to say that these people and these organizations haven’t provided us with a lot in return and they’re certainly not the Evil Empire, but there are serious boundaries here that are being crossed without so much as a kind of sideward glance at one another to say do we really want to go down that route? Because there are certain paths and avenues that once you go there it’s very difficult to step back.
MB: Yeah it seems like, as a society anyhow, you keep trading a little bit of your privacy for these free things. “Oh okay, you can find out where I’ve been if I can get this cool app on my phone, or you can send me free ads…” To me, it just seems at some point you have to stand back and wonder, “Hey, is it really worth it? For all this privacy I’m giving up, what am I getting, really?”
RG: Absolutely. I mean this is why I do have an interesting kind of irony to me, which I’m probably one of the only futurists out there who doesn’t carry a smartphone, and that was a conscious decision because of those concerns. We constantly hear you’ve got to put your wallet where your values are, you’ve got to act as a consumer, they will listen to those things. And maybe they will on a collective level at some degree, but as an individual you have to worry about those things. And I’m not saying that I necessarily did it as a very proactive move, but one day my smartphone broke and I’ve never looked back. Two years later I still don’t carry one, and that is mostly because of these issues. Do you really need something that is going to be monitoring you in that way, to that degree? Now, I don’t mean at all to sound paranoid or anything like that, but it just, it rests very uneasy with me, and I think within some—maybe not mine, I’m in my early 30s—but within some of our lifetimes and memories, depending on where you live around the world, these kind of systems would’ve been dreamed of by the people oppressing these populations. And it is something we have to take seriously, and not as fear mongers, not as kind of sitting there on forum boards, acting crazy and talking about the big conspiracies, but to say that, well, we are giving the capacity for this to people who we don’t know down the road what they’re going to use it for. So at the very least, we need to be promoting those kind of avenues of futurist technology and smartphones and other things which are making sure to embed the individual agency of the owner into the product, and we’re moving away from that agency; and in many cases you buy a product but it doesn’t even belong to you, you can’t do anything with it, you can’t control how it collects information, you can’t take it apart, you can’t hack it in any way, and I think that there are good reasons why there are big movements out there within the engineering and tech communities that are trying to overcome this progression.
MJ: So, since you’re in the UK and Matt and I tend to have a very American perspective of things I guess, do you think that the conversation is happening over there more than maybe you’ve heard of it happening in the States? Is the attitude among I guess the people that you deal with on a day-to-day basis…I mean certainly, I think Matt and I have noticed that there are an awful lot of people who, if you start talking about surveillance or the fact that you have some control issues around Facebook or this or that, a lot of people will roll their eyes and go, “Put on your tin foil hat and go away from me” basically, that “I don’t want to think about that, you’re bothering me.” Is that the reaction that is prevalent over there?
RG: Yeah, I mean I think it is to a certain degree. I mean, my blog was in part kind of inspired by the work of the IEET, the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies, and they’ve been around for a long time asking these kind of questions, and seeing them doing that at quite a high level did kind of encourage me to enter that space as well. I think over in the US—and I don’t want to overgeneralize—but I think futurists quite often fall into that kind of marketing trend, future of business, future of wearables, almost futurism as an extension of the business world and how we’re going to interact with it. So, I think there is a tendency there for futurist thinking to be more about market trends and commercial trends rather than the ethics of what we want to be as a society. But having said that, the UK is world-renowned for having more CCTV cameras than almost anywhere else. I think, you know, I walk around London and I’m recorded something like 200 times in a few hours. Now, that just becomes part of the norm and people become used to it. So, people do roll their eyes, but I think increasingly people are starting to understand that there have to be boundaries with these things, you can’t just keep rolling your eyes until one day you literally have zero privacy and everybody knows where you are and what you’re thinking and what you’re doing at every point in the day. And I don’t think that’s necessarily just a UK thing, I think it’s a global thing. I think, to a certain degree, people are starting to wake up to the notion that there are imbalances of agency, that there’s disenfranchisement and that the way some of these technologies are going—certainly not all of them because they often provide the solution as well as the problem, as we well know—but the way they could go only heightens that gap between the kind of popular decision-making or the popular sentiment and the way that society is formulated by those who are able to do so.
MB: You kind of have a unique perspective because you live in England now but you were in Australia before. Do you notice a huge difference between the UK and Australia?
RG: I mean Australians just tend to be more laid-back, don’t we?
MB: Yeah. [laughs]
RG: So we tend to worry about these things a lot less, and also Australia gives you quite a bit of distance from a lot of the kind of geopolitical issues that are around and lot of the problems that we see there. But I think now, and this is in the last 10-15 years really, we’re all having the same conversation aren’t we, because we’re all sharing the same intellectual and ideological space on the internet. Everybody is involved in this conversation to a greater or lesser degree. I think there are cultural differences. There are also economic differences. I think there’s a lot, kind of generally across the population, a higher standard of living in Australia, which tends to just make people comfortable in what they have and they’re very happy to kind of be that way and I don’t blame anybody for that. But I think we are having this shared conversation, we’re starting to see globally there’s kind of a growing movement of people who are wanting to look in this direction and just say, “Well how do we actually take control for these things so that it works for the benefit of all of us and not just for those who sell us the data plan or who force us to hand over our details?” I don’t want people to get the impression that all I’m doing with this blog is just kind of fear mongering about the needs of privacy and other things. I think there’s a lot of great hope out there in the way that these new technologies and social media and other things allow us to create communities across difference, allow us to really open up and make transparent so many different parts of society that were previously closed and enable us to get education on almost any topic we want from experts around the world. I mean there are a lot of incredibly positive and really hopeful aspects that we’re seeing to all of this, and I think what I really wanted to help do with this blog is just get people to see that the more we focus on developing those positive aspects, the more we’re able to kind of mitigate the negative influences of some of the other activities in technology.
MJ: So, Robert, when you think about kind of those positive trends, is there anything in particular that stands out? I’m always looking for some of those positive trends to follow up on. Any organizations or communities that maybe you know of that are trying to push that conversation forward? I guess I’m curious if you know of anything that we don’t already.
RG: I’m not quite sure about specifics. But if you really look at the big trends, I mean your open source software, I mean that’s a perfect example; your Creative Commons movement is a perfect example. You have people who are doing a lot of work on what it means to be a functioning democracy in the likes of Iceland or others who have really gone the extra step to be collaborative, participatory societies. Scotland, for example, I heard somebody say, who was working with the Scottish government, that their new aim now is to be the most open and inclusive political government on the planet. So when people are starting to talk like that at a government level with millions of citizens looking up to them or around them, that is very hopeful, and it’ll just be interesting to see who is going to help create those platforms and those workflows and those processes that really enable these things to get off the ground. I mean we saw with things like the Occupy movement and the Indignados and throughout Latin America and other things, I mean we’re seeing all of these things take place, but then often a lot of them can’t—they’re not self-sustaining for some strange reason usually to do with human difference and the inability for us to get along for long periods of time. But there are ways to overcome that and I think we’re starting to see more and more people experimenting and filling those places. I mean one that I recently came across, and then this ties into the Scottish stuff, is Otto Scharmer over at MIT doing some of his Presencing Institute stuff, which is kind of I think an interesting way to secularize the loss of faith and religion in the public sphere in some of these places. But it is trying to bring together tens of thousands of people around the world to just prototype ideas about how to make the world better in whatever that means in their local context, and to do so with a group of people that they’ve probably never met before. So I think those kind of things are the things that we need to focus on and give our energy to, because these things don’t happen unless we actually get out there and start doing them, do they? That’s the inevitable truth to it all.
MJ: Well and, just to kind of tie into that a little bit, and also back to the whole self-publishing thing, since you are a creator…one of my frustrations certainly with sort of my peer group and stuff, and Matt’s heard this a couple times, is that people seem very willing to share things like BuzzFeed or the various whatever the viral hit of the moment is, that a lot of that seems to be created by corporate departments or things like that. And yet when people are doing things maybe more creative, maybe they’re releasing songs on the internet, or a novel, or a short story or things like that, it can be very difficult to get traction. I guess I’m curious what your experience as a creator was like with your peer circles as far as helping you spread the word about what you were doing, and the same with your blog. Have you seen that people are willing to kind of help you spread the word about something you’re doing, or is there still kind of that looking upwards to the mass media of what’s sort of expected or what everybody else is sharing before people are willing to help out?
RG: Absolutely. I think the key thing to this is that we have to start to understand is that the “mass media,” or the big conglomerates anyway, they have a vested interest in not allowing self-publishing and these things to really take off in a certain way. I mean when they do, they’re usually because they’re monetized and contracted, and then they kind of pick people out and then make them superstars and make money off the back of them. But what I’ve found most hopeful is actually turning away from that side of things, where all the big flashy lights are that draw our attention—and I’m one for watching all those kind of funny videos as much as anybody else is, try not to click anything on BuzzFeed but I’m on Reddit all the time… But what I’ve found most hopeful is really on Twitter and other things—I mean the reason why I’m here, I presume, and doing this podcast with you now is because there’s a really strong futurist community on Twitter and we kind of get to know one another’s work because we are paying attention to our sector, and that just cuts through geographic differences, professional differences, even political differences. It just allows us to kind of recognize that, as futurists, there’s a really strong probably 5,000 to 10,000-strong creator community on Twitter, at least, and these are the ones that are kind of actively outputting, that are starting to get to know one another. That’s been the best part of all of this, is just meeting people and their projects and writing a review…I did a review a few years ago for a movie called “Radio Free Albemuth,” which was based off of a Philip K. Dick book, and saw the world premiere in London, and wrote a review, and then off the back of that review, actually met with the director and producers, and then Elizabeth Karr, the producer of that, gave me a cover quote for my book. And so there’s this kind of collaborative community feeling which is very easily embraced because we’re all here trying to kind of…not just broadcast, but trying to bounce ideas off of one another. When you see people who are all trying to look in the same direction and trying to formulate a positive future for everybody, I think you start to gravitate towards one another, don’t you? And that’s probably been the best part of publishing this book, is meeting more of those people, such as yourselves. It’s great.
MJ: Oh definitely. I’m a huge fan of Twitter. I always like to describe it to people that aren’t familiar with it as sort of the bathroom wall of the internet.
RG: [laughs] Exactly.
MJ: Is there anything we haven’t covered that you want to make sure that we include?
RG: Yeah, I mean I think if I had to say what was one thing that I wanted to add to the futurist discussion, and there are a lot of guest speakers and others which you’ve had on here which blow me out of the water as far as their technological expertise or their kind of professional history or whatever, but I think one of the things I really do want to say is that we need to start redefining what it means to be a futurist. We’ve discussed some of that, but really what I want to say is that we need to veer away from seeing ourselves just as kind of trend consultants or just talking about the latest bit of wearable tech and all these kind of things, because that isn’t really good enough. And the way I’d like to formulate that is to say that as futurists what we really are and what our role should be is to be loyal to the future. We’re very good at being loyal to the past, and usually stubbornly so. We’re sometimes loyal to the present, rarely. But I feel like we’re collectively awful at being loyal to the future, and issues of climate change is the most pressing example of that. So I think futurists, anybody who feels that they are that, and really anybody who feels it is a futurist, we need to be active in this sense and we need to be speaking up for those who are yet to even be born, you know? Part of our role as futurists is to be loyal to the future, and I think that that means we have to veer away from talking about the future as if it’s just a collection of personal luxuries and novelty items. These are social structures, these are economic structures, these are how to formulate community, these are how to resist the commodification of daily life, our privacy, our faith and sacredness, our transformative capacity in whatever sense you believe it to be, is really key to overcoming all of the kind of pitfalls and dangers of the 21st century, and I think redefining what it means to be a futurist in that sense and taking a proactive role in helping answer that question of what do we want to be is, I think, key to coming together as a community and really contributing something to global society.
MJ: Yeah. I think some of the best science fiction actually deals with elements of that, and certainly it’s something to aspire to.
RG: Absolutely. I mean, yeah, I think science fiction—you’ve nailed it on the head—I mean that was always almost that role of the science fiction greats, wasn’t it? I do feel like we’re losing sight of that and maybe we need to kind of draw ourselves back in.
MJ: Where can people find you online, and if they wanted to go ahead and check out “When Winter Calls,” where can they do that?
RG: Excellent. So I mean the key thing I guess is on Twitter, which is @FutureCon. So that’s for Future Conscience. And the blog that I’ve been writing is FutureConscience.com. You can search for “When Winter Calls,” it’s available on Kindle at the moment; the paperback version will be coming out soon, and then once we’ve got that sorted I’ll open it up. It’s one of those wonderful contradictions that I’m writing a book about kind of corporate sovereignty and control and it’s, for the moment at least, available exclusively on Amazon. So don’t think that that contradiction has gone past my notice. [laughs] But you can search for it on Amazon, “When Winter Calls,” you’ll find it there. You can go to the FutureConscience.com website. Anybody who wants to get in touch, really get in touch on Twitter. I’m really open to have conversations and support one another’s projects, and talk to one another, and do interviews like this, or have interviews on my blog for crowdsourced projects or other things that are in these areas. And then, just thank you guys once again for reaching out. I think this is what it’s all about, really.
MJ: Okay, well thanks so much for joining us, Robert.
RG: Thank you very much. Cheers.
A: That’s all for this episode of Robot Overlordz. Are you interested in the future and how society is changing? We’d love to have you join our community. Visit our website to learn more and to connect with others that share that interest. You can find us at RobotOverlordz.FM. The site includes all of the show’s old episodes along with complete transcripts, links to more information about the topics and guests in each episode, and our mailing list and forums. We’d also love to hear what you think about the show. You can review us on iTunes or email us.
A: We hope to see you again in the future…
MJ: Thanks everyone for listening.