lord_kobel wrote: ↑
Sat Mar 16, 2019 9:45 am
spoonman wrote: ↑
Sat Mar 16, 2019 12:58 am
But Facebook even with an algorithm that filters what is personally published to you is still behaving as a neutral actor because the filter is built up from the the information the user has supplied as well as its interaction on the platform.
As we've seen with Brexit and Trump, frankly that's just bollocks.
It's not really. With all the hearings in various countries and reports that have came out surrounding content on social media in those cases, there is nothing to suggest that Facebook (or Google) were themselves actively manipulating their own personalisation algorithms to unwittingly push fake news and other crap on to unwitting people. Personally I find the idea of Mark Zuckerberg getting involved to deliberately have neo-Nazi material pushed to millions of Facebook users ridiculous. What they can be accused of at best is that they were not quick enough to remove pages and material that broke ToS, and that they were slow to react to an industrial scale attempt to game their system the same way YouTube is still being gamed by the alt-right to offer suggestions for videos that have tedious links to your viewing history.
The idea of gaming systems in place to get around blocks that people opt for to not want undesirable content given to them isn't exactly new. The trouble in dealing with spam e-mail is a good one where these days getting spam into your inbox if your service has a competent spam filter means next to no spam should reach it, but that took quite a few years to make it as strong as it is, isn't 100% perfect and I doubt it ever will be. The ways those leaving c.o.m.m.e.n.t.s. on the D***y M**l website to try and ¨get around the auto filters is another. In the offline world you have unscrupulous scammers and con artists attempt to get around blocks put in place to stop junk mail and cold calling etc. The likes of BT & Royal Mail have options available for its customers to have filters in place to help stop much of this reaching them, but the more cunning can get around it with varying levels of difficulty. It's a constant game of cat and mouse.
As I see it, the reaction comes from authorities and self-appointed moral guardians slowly losing grip of the controls they've been used to in the past where the available material lies in a semi anarchical site based more on where the content is hosted rather than the location of the consumer. Once technological progress has been made, it's impossible to put it back in its box. Unless you're planning on going full Great Firewall of China, or what the Russians want to do with the ability to isolate the country from foreign hosted content, then ideas have to be tried and tested. Once it became possible for people to communicate a message to millions of those well beyond its national borders without needing the receiving country's permission for distribution in the form of radio waves the governments and other authorities have been looking at to how to deal with it while at the same time engage in such disruption themselves.