‘New normality’ of the covid-19 era: Opportunities, limitations, risks


The article considers some key aspects of the current transformation of social reality. The author argues that the announcement of the pandemic determined an unprecedented situation: humanity faces a completely different concept of reality. In particular, the breakthrough in the development of NBIC technologies (nano, bio, new information and cognitive technologies) contributes to the strengthening of the paradigm that absolutizes the technocratic component of civilizational development. Under the general depression and decline in economic activity, there is an explosive growth in the field of bioengineering, information and cognitive research. The ‘new normality’ of the coronavirus era, associated with the unprecedented development of artificial intelligence systems, video surveillance technologies, geolocation and ‘big data’, in an unusually short time has created new existential and legal problems. The proclaimed threat to public health, being a significant goal-setting, has become a dominant justification for the introduction of serious innovations that allow the ruling elites to block civil rights, in particular, to legalize the use of tracking systems. Under the fight against the pandemic, the personal identification systems based on advanced technologies are being transformed from a security tool of law enforcement agencies into a tool of mass social engineering. Russia has come close to a new stage of digital transformation - a state-wide credential management system (the Unified Federal Information Register). Considering the experience of China in digital segregation, concerns arise: will digitalization turn into something dangerous as the algorithms of artificial intelligence improve, the use of biometric surveillance broaden, etc.? The article emphasizes that scanning the appearance and collecting information about citizens allows to create a gigantic array of data, the use of which can have unpredictable consequences, and the problem of their unauthorized use is not the main one. The power of algorithms, which allows to manipulate a person by means of continuously collected information about him, can turn into a new, sophisticated form of genocide.

About the authors

E. N. Gnatik

RUDN University

Author for correspondence.
Email: gnatik-en@rudn.ru

доктор философских наук, доцент кафедры онтологии и теории познания

Miklukho-Maklaya St., 6, Moscow, 117198, Russia


  1. Bolshaya Meditsinskaya Entsiklopediya [Great Medical Encyclopedia (BME)]. Pod red. B.V. Petrovskogo. 3rd ed. Vol. 18. (In Russ.).
  2. Gromyko A.A. Koronavirus kak faktor mirovoy politiki [Coronavirus as a factor of the global politics]. Nauchno-Analitichesky Vestnik Instituta Evropy RAN. 2020; 2. (In Russ.).
  3. Evropeyskoe regionalnoe byuro VOZ. Gripp — fakty i statistika [WHO Regional Office for Europe. Influenza — facts and statistics]. URL: https://www.euro.who.int/ru/health-topics/ communicable-diseases/influenza/data-and-statistics. (In Russ.).
  4. Lokosov V.V. Demograficheskoe razvitie Rossii: dinamika i sotsialno-ekonomicheskie riski [Demographic development of Russia: Dynamics and sociak-economic risks]. Vestnik RAN. 2020; 90 (3). (In Russ.).
  5. Moskovskaya elektronnaya shkola — eto budushchee obrazovaniya [Moscow Electronic School — the future of education]. URL: https://www.mos.ru/city/projects/mesh. (In Russ.).
  6. Ovchinsky V.S. Pod pritselom videokamer i big data [Under the sight of video cameras and big data]. URL: https://izborsk-club.ru/20614. (In Russ.).
  7. Ovchinsky V.S. VEF ob osnovnykh problemakh kiberbezopasnosti [EEF on the main problems of cybersecurity]. URL: https://izborsk-club.ru/20667. (In Russ.).
  8. Pandemiya grippa [Flu pandemic]. URL: https://www.euro.who.int/ru/health-topics/ communicable-diseases/influenza/pandemic-influenza. (In Russ.).
  9. Petrov A.A. Kitaysky tsifrovoy profil ili skoringovaya sistema sotsialnogo doveriya [Chinese digital profile or social trust scoring system]. Chronos. 2020; 8. (In Russ.).
  10. Petrov A.A. Noveyshie instrumenty chetvertoy promyshlennoy revolyutsii i tsifrovye mekhanizmy kontrolya i upravleniya obshchestvom [The newest tools of the fourth industrial revolution and digital mechanisms to control and manage the society]. Chronos. 2020; 8. (In Russ.).
  11. Programma “Moskva Umny gorod 2030” [Moscow Smart City 2030 Program]. URL: https://www.mos.ru/upload/alerts/files/3_Tekststrategii.pdf. (In Russ.).
  12. Programma “Tsifrovaya ekonomika Rossiyskoy Federatsii” — natsionalnaya programma razvitiya tsifrovoy ekonomiki Rossiyskoy Federatsii [Program “Digital Economy of the Russian Federation” — the national program for the development of the Russian digital economy]. URL: http://static.government.ru/media/files/9gFM4FHj4PsB79I5v7yLVuPgu4b vR7M0.pdf. (In Russ.).
  13. Roshal L.M. Nam nuzhno spokoyno proyti po ostriyu nozha [We need to calmly walk along the edge of the knife]. URL: https://ria.ru/20200329/1569294323.html. (In Russ.).
  14. Khronologiya deystviy VOZ po borbe s covid-19 [Timeline of the WHO actions in the fight against the covid-19]. URL: https://www.who.int/ru/news/item/29-06-2020-covidtimeline. (In Russ.).
  15. Chuchalin A.G. My platim za to, chto nedootsenili mir virusov, v kotorom zhivem [We pay for underestimating the virus world we live in]. URL: https://newizv.ru/news/society/25-01-2021/akademik-chuchalin-my-platim-za-to-chto-nedootsenili-mir-virusov-v-kotorom-zhivyom. (In Russ.).
  16. Shchelkunov M.D. Obshchestvo v usloviyakh pandemii: repetitsiya tsifrovogo budushchego [Society in the pandemic: A rehearsal of the digital future]. Vestnik ekonomiki, prava i sotsiologii. 2020; 2. (In Russ.).
  17. Eksperty nazvali Rossiyu tretyey v mire po chislu kamer videonablyudeniya [Experts named Russia the third in the world in the number of CCTV cameras]. URL: https://www.rbc.ru/ technology_and_media/25/12/2020/5fe5862d9a7947bc3af51a67. (In Russ.).
  18. Gnatik E. Information technologies in educational sphere: Challenges and risks. Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Arts, Design and Contemporary Education (ICADCE). 2018; 232.
  19. Gnatik E. Transhumanism horizons of convergent technologies. Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Contemporary Education, Social Sciences and Humanities (ICCESSH). 2017; 124.
  20. Rubin G.J., Wessely S. The psychological effects of quarantining a city. BMJ. 2020; 368.
  21. Trotsuk I.V. All power to the experts? Contradictions of the information society as both depending on and devaluating expertise. Russian Sociological Review. 2021; 20 (1).
  22. Webster R.K., Smith L.E., Woodland L., Wessely S., Greenberg N., Rubin G.J. The psychological impact of quarantine and how to reduce it: Rapid review of the evidence. Lancet. 2020; 39

Copyright (c) 2021 Gnatik E.N.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This website uses cookies

You consent to our cookies if you continue to use our website.

About Cookies