Have you ever looked at a social media profile and wondered if it’s a real, legit, person, or not? This quiz put together by Clemson University and Interactive Knowledge will help teach you how to tell if an account is … Read More
Young people may not remember this, but I was 17-18 when this was happening, and I remember it well. And, mostly, I remember this lesson: Diving into this 1985 time capsule is instructive in showing just how fevered arguments … Read More
Stefanie’s list of questions is a good place to start for really anyone. “Who – who specifically does it help? What – what problem does it solve? When – do you know the right time to post it on social … Read More
And this really brings me back to my point, that we do a poor job of truly understanding science, statistics and cause and effect. We believe that algorithms have all been well-thought out, and produce a “true” result, even when they are trying to predict something as unpredictable as what traffic will look like 20 years from now. We assume social science studies are giving us the “right” answer for how to educate people, or train them for the best outcomes, without considering what we are teaching them about the larger world. We assume that we can tweak one belief, or one thing, without human beings reacting to those changes in unpredictable ways, all the while thinking our one change will cause the reaction we DO predict.
We assume a lot that should never be assumed. We over-simplify a world that actually has more influences than we can possibly account for, and assume that what is really a small statistical difference represents a universal truth.
It doesn’t. There are no simple answers. It takes hard work, hard discussions, and lots of listening to figure out the best way forward. Don’t wait for AI to tell you what to do, it may be missing quite a bit.… Read More
It’s looking more and more like the Twitter Bitcoin scam was an inside job, or at least aided quite a bit by someone inside of Twitter who had access to do all of that. But, the interesting part, to me, … Read More
One of the most popular arguments we hear, and one I’ve made myself, is that to truly stay informed, and avoid living in the bubble of our own political bias, we need to make sure we are getting information from a variety of sources, including ones we may not agree with.
This study seems to be telling us that isn’t enough, and it can easily be manipulated. If I read an opposing viewpoint, and there’s no reward for doing so, I’m unlikely to really be influenced by it, but if I read an opposing viewpoint and get rewarded for it, I’m more likely to change my mind.
Now, remember that emotional contagion we might get from social media? What if I shared one side of a political view, and got rewarded by the algorithms or whomever with lots of likes and comments, and the post got shared a whole bunch, but posts from the other side, got none of that? Which side am I more likely to agree with? Right, the one that I got better grades on. Not because it’s true, better, or more accurate, but because I am rewarded for thinking that way. Rewarded the way I’ve been my whole life, since I was a little boy, from the first time my parents wanted me to behave a certain way, all the way through my school years, and for all of my career.
How hard would that be to fight against? Almost impossible, I’d say. How easy would it be for social media to do it, either the companies themselves, or large groups of users?
How does that influence what we do see on social media?… Read More
Gone to a protest lately? Seen a lot of advertising about voting, or BLM, or related subjects since then? That’s no coincidence. “Jason Berlin, founder of a voter-registration group called Field Team 6, told the WSJ that such location-based tactics … Read More