When you used to store your family photos in physical albums, and then you were convinced to store them all on a hard drive, and then you were convinced by a large for-profit company to store them in the cloud for free, until the cloud became the only place your photos were stored, and the company decided to charge a monthly fee in order for you to continue to store all of your photos online, you have been had.

When you cannot imagine leaving home for an errand, a day of work, or a vacation without a device that did not exist throughout all of human history until the twenty-ninth of June ano Domini 2007, you have been had.

When large for-profit companies spend significant marketing money to convince you to adopt their flagship product for free, you should stop to ask why.

When a social media app invites you to choose who to follow—giving you the semblance of choice and control over the information you ingest daily—and then decides to decide themselves which of those posts you will see—and when—while also showing you content from people and companies you have not followed, you should stop to ask why.

The first step is recognizing that you have been had. The next step is using that recognition as motivation to more quickly stop to ask why the next time you see something shiny in the world of technology.