It is psychological gravity, not technical inertia, however, that is the bigger antagonist of the open web. Human beings are social animals and centralized social media like Twitter and Facebook provide a powerful sense of ambient humanity—that feeling that “others are here”—that is often missing when one writes on one’s own site. Facebook has a whole team of Ph.D.s in social psychology finding ways to increase that feeling of ambient humanity and thus increase your usage of their service.
Truly tackling the problem of hateful misinformation online requires rejecting the false choice between leaving it alone or censoring it outright. The real solution is one that has not been entertained by either Zuckerberg or his critics: counter-programming hateful or misleading speech with better speech.
For 20 years, privacy advocates
Cambridge Analytica are like stage mentalists: they’re doing something labor-intensive and pretending that it’s something supernatural. A stage mentalist will train for years to learn to quickly memorize a deck of cards and then claim that they can name your card thanks to their psychic powers. You never see the unglamorous, unimpressive memorization practice. source
The comparison between Cambridge Analytica (and big data in general) with the stage mentalist is intriguing. I am left wondering about the disappointment and disbelief in the truth. Sometimes there is a part of us that oddly wants to be mesmerised and to believe.
It’s fashionable to treat the dysfunctions of social media as the result of the naivete of early technologists, who failed to foresee these outcomes. The truth is that the ability to build Facebook-like services is relatively common. What was rare was the moral recklessness necessary to go through with it. source
Facebook and Cambridge Analytica raise the question of just because we can, it doesn’t mean we should.
Facebook doesn’t have a mind-control problem, it has a corruption problem. Cambridge Analytica didn’t convince decent people to become racists; they convinced racists to become voters. source
In relation to the question of mind-control verses corruption, I wonder where the difference exists. Does corruption involve some element of ‘mind-control’ to convince somebody that this is the answer?
Facebook is working to spread its face-matching tools even as it faces heightened scrutiny from regulators and legislators in Europe and North America.
A system that could detect consumers within stores and match those shoppers’ faces with their social networking profiles. Then it could analyze the characteristics of their friends, and other details, using the information to determine a “trust level” for each shopper.
Cameras near checkout counters could capture shoppers’ faces, match them with their social networking profiles and then send purchase confirmation messages to their phones.
This made me wonder how many patents actually come to fruition and how many are a form of indirect marketing?
Say no to defaults. A clickable guide to fixing the complicated privacy settings from Facebook, Google, Amazon, Microsoft and Apple.
In the furor that followed, Facebook’s leaders said that the kind of access exploited by Cambridge in 2014 was cut off by the next year, when Facebook prohibited developers from collecting information from users’ friends. But the company officials did not disclose that Facebook had exempted the makers of cellphones, tablets and other hardware from such restrictions.
If Facebook was a tool for confirmation bias, that would kind of suck. It would. But that is not the claim. The claim is that Facebook is quite literally training us to be conspiracy theorists. And given the history of what happens when conspiracy theory and white supremacy mix, that should scare the hell out of you. I’m petrified. Mark Zuckerberg should be too.
People exposed themselves to Facebook multiple times a day, every single day, seeing headlines making all sorts of crazy claims, and filed them in their famil-o-meter for future reference.