Facebook – Friend or Foe?  Part 2

 

Facebook – Friend or Foe? 

 

If you saw the movie The Social Network based on the development of facebook, you saw how as an excellent idea (dream), helping friends and family stay in touch became what it is today. For those who are spread over this entire wonderful planet of ours find this a fantastic sharing tool. I certainly know of people who gain great use from this feature, particularly when maintaining their site in a closed, private fashion.

 

Has Facebook changed since it started?

Many feel that Facebook has grown into what seems a monster, pretty much out of control and entering every facet of their lives, with now in excess 2 billion users. If we put this into another perspective, Facebook would be larger than any one single country including China or India. With no real opposition or competition Facebook appears to have  become a monopoly providing great concerns for many people, as well as governments. Because of the sheer scale of this amazing undertaking, the managers Facebook rely on a rudimentary form of ‘artificial intelligence’,  presently referred to as an algorithm. The problem with these Facebook algorithms is  that is comparatively easy to construct an ecosystem, fully capable of manipulating participants and readers alike.

 

“Content and brand has been determined unsafe to the community.”   Facebook

 

There has been significant suggestion that Facebook has designed some of its algorithms to promote a certain point of view and downplay contrary or opposing points of view. I recently saw a story where too African American video bloggers (and Trump Supporters), known as Diamond and Silk were censored and then banned from Facebook for the supposed crime of “content and brand has been determined unsafe to the community.” YES, this is a true story!

Furthermore, Facebook is been accused / credited with swinging some results of the recent US elections in favour of the ultimate result, obviously not wanted by those on the opposing   side. Those on the losing side of the election have credited Russia with massive interference in the US election process, while seemingly spending less than US$200,000. Seems a real bargain to me.

 

Scary, but a ‘political’ bargain nonetheless.

 

As I approach the end of this current ‘Brain Dump” on this subject, I’ll share my final thoughts on why I left Facebook, and what part Social media in general will play in my life, going forward.

 

Until then, have a great week

Facebook – Friend or Foe?

Facebook – Friend or Foe?

Have you ever wondered why you or anyone you know joined Facebook? Is it recognition. Is it for visibility? Perhaps business purposes? Or, family and friends ‘sharing’?

I guess you would have needed to have been living under a rock to not be aware of the present controversy surrounding Facebook, as well as other Social media sites.

In the interests of full disclosure I closed my Facebook account down a few days ago. I was never a fan, but was prepared to give it a try, and live with it for well over a year. My decision wasn’t for the reasons you may think, their does appear to be have been a massive privacy and data breach at facebook,  but rather my own view that it is complete waste of time and effort. At least it was for me.

 

Who in their right mind would ever publish their very personal information?Remember, everything has a price and nothing is free! 

 

Anyway, who in their right mind would post anything really personal like the true date of birth on any website, where anyone, including scammers could potentially build a personal profile, potentially opening users up to identity theft. Most sites farm and analyse information provided that has been so willingly supplied by users. No one should assume they have privacy on the internet.

 

Why did I get involved in Social Media in the first place?

 

My initial motive was to see if I could connect with old friends and acquaintances from school and my early adulthood. Seems these people have either changed identities, names (marriage) or just don’t use Facebook. Either way, this hope was never realised, at least not to any real significance.

 

Is having around 200 Facebook Friends significant? What about 10,000?

What if any? Who really cares?

 

At the time of closing my account, I believe I had somewhere the vicinity of 200 Facebook ‘Friends’, many of whom I have not met and certainly do not know. Most of these ‘connections’ actually came about through people I had connected (and knew); in essence most connections came about through a second party invitation. Seems to me that many Facebookers collect ‘friends’ much in the way food crumbs attract ants.

When I finally took time to assess what was actually happening, I was ultimately presented with a whole range of photos of people and their families and friends, many of whom I I don’t know. Updates on their children’s sporting prowess and achievements and of course recent meals they had just eaten or were about to eat.  Occasionally some members voiced a point of view, or made an enquiry which opened the door to discussion and debate. I did note a great deal of Virtue Signalling.

 

I am always up for informative and respectful debate,

while looking for alternative points of view.

After all not all my thoughts and values are set in stone!

 

While it’s never my intention to be rude or disrespectful on any matter, I am not concerned if others disagree with me. After all everyone is entitled to their own point of view.

I’ll let you know my final thoughts on why I left Facebook, and Social media in general when I post again next week.

Until then, have a great week