It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
These days, when one searches Google, the search engine adjusts and filters its results using 57 signals gleaned from the user’s past online behavior. It’s a similar story with Facebook – it modifies a user’s news feeds according to, among other behavior, the types of links she most often clicks and the friends with whom she interacts the most. Unfortunately, Pariser pointed out, such algorithms that decide what we see (and subsequently what we think) based on relevancy are, well, perhaps making us dumber.
Because what such relevancy-based algorithms do is narrow the field of information to which the user is exposed, and over time, basically deny the user of anything other than content that runs the same lines as her own opinions, sources and points of view. “A squirrel dying in front of your house may be more relevant to your interests right now than people dying in Africa,” said Mark Zuckerberg to his staff as he introduced the then-new concept of Facebook’s News Feed. This train of thought is basically the problem Pariser’s referencing: users may indeed favor icanhazcheezburger content or autotuned celebrity freakouts, but a content stream modified to suit such click behavior could theoretically make a meme fanatic into a veritable zombie.
I’m sure this isn’t part of some nefarious master plan of Google and Facebook to make us all complacent drones more likely to lay down and accept the imminent Google/ Facebook world takeover. And the argument that technology is making us dumber isn’t, in any capacity, a new one.
TED: Ideas worth spreading.
TED is a nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading -- through TED.com, our annual conferences, the annual TED Prize and local TEDx events.
Originally posted by blupblup
One of the telling quotes is
A squirrel dying in front of your house may be more relevant to your interests right now than people dying in Africa. - Mark Zuckerbergedit on 19/1/12 by blupblup because: (no reason given)