You can only join the exclusive new social network TopCom if you're among the 200 richest people in the world. Then again, if you're on hand in Davos Switzerland when TopCom is unveiled by scary software compant Tibco, there's a pretty good chance you're in that group.
TopCom is a highly secure private social network, a sort of "combination Facebook, Twitter, e-mail, texting, and Skype" for "the people who run the world," according to Esquire. In other words, it's like an electronic, year-round version of the obnoxiously self-important annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, where TopCom will be launched later this week. Here's the happy, sanitized version of how this advanced conspiracy machine might work:
For example, Japanese prime minister Yoshihiko Noda can post a video of himself - viewable only by the top two hundred - asking for help because a major earthquake has caused a tsunami ... and call for an immediate videoconference among the appropriate world leaders to get Japan aid in the quickest way. CEOs of companies that have facilities near the impact site... could join forces... [Specially-invited] experts on nuclear power and crisis management could instantly offer opinions on the likelihood of various disaster scenarios.
In reality, this will probably just be used by Goldman Sachs etc. to dole out orders to political minions (i.e. heads of state), for U.S. agents to initiate comical attempts to spy on everyone (Tibco counts Homeland Security and Lockheed Martin among its many clients), and for Joe Biden to attempt to "punk" his global colleagues via video chat. Not that TopCom will last very long: As Harvey Weinstein learned with his disastrous "MySpace for Millionaires" scheme A Small World, rich people don't need their own social network. They already spend enough time with one another, and known how to reach each other if need be. The rest of the time, they tend to prefer the company of people who they can control, who they can easily impress, and who are young and pretty. Those people won't be on TopCom.