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  • Social Media

    In light of the Facebook whistleblower revelations, I'm surprised no one has started a thread about social media. So...

    Disclosure: TheologyWeb is my only social media account. My wife is on Facebook.

    The premise of Facebook is good but the execution seems to have gone badly. After watching if for a few years, it certainly seems to me that the only thing Mr. Zuckerberg cares about is money and the more of it he has, the better. The last ads I saw on TV for Facebook emphasized finding friends with common interests. Certainly listening to my wife describe what she sees, it doesn't seem to work that way. I can't recall her saying anything about here's a nice group to join up with. What I hear about are ads, her soap opera updates, a picture posted by an artist friend, and the occasional message from a friend. It doesn't seem real positive nor does it make me eager to sign up.

    Then there is the general trend in social media that outrage gets liked or attention. I even see this on TheologyWeb. While there are exceptions, once a thread gets past 20 to 30 posts, it's highly likely to have devolved into a name-calling, ad hominin attacking exchange that does nothing to improve anyone's life. There do seem to be some people who more often than not prefer to fight rather than discuss. Its probably a cause (not the only cause by any means) of why our society has become more polarized.

    So what should be done? As much as I'm not a fan of government regulation, it's obvious to me that Facebook (and the others) won't regulate themselves. It's time for the government to start regulating social media. Probably not on content, but on privacy and how they emphasis or hide posts. I'm not thrilled with the idea of based on truth because today's misinformation can turn into tomorrow's fact. I'm not overly familiar with the European rules or California's but they might be a place to start.

    Also maybe they need to start regulating the algorithms. I work in the financial world and I've read discussion about how the regulators are going after banks who do loan approvals or declines by a computer algorithm. For example, regulate the algorithms so companies are punished if they cause teen girls to get links to diet products or anorexics sites,

    Yes, it will be a mess and tricky to get right. But the current system isn't working.
    "For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings." Hosea 6:6

    "Theology can be an intellectual entertainment." Metropolitan Anthony Bloom

  • #2
    Originally posted by Thoughtful Monk View Post
    In light of the Facebook whistleblower revelations, I'm surprised no one has started a thread about social media. So...

    Disclosure: TheologyWeb is my only social media account. My wife is on Facebook.
    I've been on Facebook since about 2008. It's basically my only social media site other than TWeb. I do also, relatively rarely, get into discussions on various blogs.

    In the past, I've participated on numerous social media venues, including The Site which Must Not be Named and a few of its offshoots.


    The premise of Facebook is good but the execution seems to have gone badly.
    This is the *original* premise:

    It began at Harvard University in 2003 as Facemash, an online service for students to judge the attractiveness of their fellow students. Because the primary developer, Zuckerberg, violated university policy in acquiring resources for the service, it was shut down after two days


    From here.

    After watching if for a few years, it certainly seems to me that the only thing Mr. Zuckerberg cares about is money and the more of it he has, the better. The last ads I saw on TV for Facebook emphasized finding friends with common interests. Certainly listening to my wife describe what she sees, it doesn't seem to work that way. I can't recall her saying anything about here's a nice group to join up with. What I hear about are ads, her soap opera updates, a picture posted by an artist friend, and the occasional message from a friend. It doesn't seem real positive nor does it make me eager to sign up.
    Yes, Suckaturd is mostly concerned with money. The FB users are the product, and he is selling us to advertisers. He's also a leftie, and the "algorithms" are set up to tilt "fact-checking" in that direction.

    What your wife sees is based on her interests and her collection of Friends.

    I belong to Groups that interest me: Captain Action, Major Matt Mason, Social Fixer User Support, Toy Robot / Space Toy Collectors, Theology Web, OlderGeeks, a few related to health and fitness, a few related to lost pets, a few related to local issues, and one for my high school graduating class.

    Social Fixer and adblockers help a bit with ads, but I still get plenty. Occasionally one interests me, so I don't get bent out of shape over them. What *does* make me raise an eyebrow is the FB knows what products I look for online *even when I use a separate browser.* That is, I do Facebook in Opera and most other stuff, including shopping, in Pale Moon. If I Google search products in Pale Moon, very often ads for related items will almost immediately show up in my FB News Feed.

    In my News Feed, I see posts from family and friends, and from Daily Wire, Dinesh D'Souza, Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham, Marg Mowczko, Craig Keener (rarely), YAF, CBE, and several others.

    I have definite complaints with FB. But it has been a great way for me to stay in touch with family and friends. One thing I really like is that I have become fairly close with high school classmates that I barely talked to when I was in school with them. (I was very... non-outgoing.)

    Then there is the general trend in social media that outrage gets liked or attention. I even see this on TheologyWeb. While there are exceptions, once a thread gets past 20 to 30 posts, it's highly likely to have devolved into a name-calling, ad hominin attacking exchange that does nothing to improve anyone's life. There do seem to be some people who more often than not prefer to fight rather than discuss. Its probably a cause (not the only cause by any means) of why our society has become more polarized.
    Facebook is utterly horrible for long-form discussions. They quickly become literally impossible to follow.

    Some of the outrage can be controlled by one's privacy settings. Users have some control over who sees their posts, and whose posts they see. In my case, it would not surprise me if my family has adjusted their settings to avoid seeing a lot of my posts. I'm conservative-libertarian and Trump-supporting. Others of my generation are cetrist to center-left. The next generation is rather solid left (but not far left).


    So what should be done? As much as I'm not a fan of government regulation, it's obvious to me that Facebook (and the others) won't regulate themselves. It's time for the government to start regulating social media. Probably not on content, but on privacy and how they emphasis or hide posts. I'm not thrilled with the idea of based on truth because today's misinformation can turn into tomorrow's fact. I'm not overly familiar with the European rules or California's but they might be a place to start.

    Also maybe they need to start regulating the algorithms. I work in the financial world and I've read discussion about how the regulators are going after banks who do loan approvals or declines by a computer algorithm. For example, regulate the algorithms so companies are punished if they cause teen girls to get links to diet products or anorexics sites,

    Yes, it will be a mess and tricky to get right. But the current system isn't working.
    As it currently stands, they get the best of both worlds by behaving like either a "platform" or a "publisher," depending on what suits them. If they are a "platform," they definitely should not be allowed to, e.g., disallow "Babylon Bee" from publishing "satire" that FB deems to be "punching down." But I'm uncomfortable with government interfering, and all the more so with the current leftist one-party rule. I do not at all trust them to implement any changes that will not chill conservative speech and advantage Dems in future elections.
    Geislerminian Antinomian Kenotic Charispneumaticostal Gender Mutualist-Egalitarian.

    Beige Nationalist.

    "Everybody is somebody's heretic."

    Social Justice is usually the opposite of actual justice.

    Comment


    • #3
      I only signed up for Facebook during The Crash™ and never use it. About the only time I go to Facebook or twitter is when a link sends me there.

      As for the 60 Minutes whistleblower... When else in history has a whistleblower essentially argued for giving the group that she's supposedly informing on, more power and control? Smells very fishy.

      I'm always still in trouble again

      "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
      "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
      "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

      Comment


      • #4
        Civics seems to be the only area that regularly devolves into name calling and fights. Which is why we were considering closing it down, since we are supposed to be a theology site, not a political one. I think it has gotten a little better since the last election but still is volatile.

        Facebook's major problem in my opinion is their "fact checking" crap. The fact checkers are clearly liberal and very biased. That tends to tick off people and to me actually starts fights sometimes. Also it seems to have a lot of algorithms that feed people what they want to see, reinforcing their own biases.


        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Sparko View Post
          Civics seems to be the only area that regularly devolves into name calling and fights.
          Nincompoopiehead!




          Just making sure the section lives up to its rep.

          I'm always still in trouble again

          "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
          "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
          "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Thoughtful Monk View Post
            In light of the Facebook whistleblower revelations, I'm surprised no one has started a thread about social media. So...

            Disclosure: TheologyWeb is my only social media account. My wife is on Facebook.

            The premise of Facebook is good but the execution seems to have gone badly. After watching if for a few years, it certainly seems to me that the only thing Mr. Zuckerberg cares about is money and the more of it he has, the better. The last ads I saw on TV for Facebook emphasized finding friends with common interests. Certainly listening to my wife describe what she sees, it doesn't seem to work that way. I can't recall her saying anything about here's a nice group to join up with. What I hear about are ads, her soap opera updates, a picture posted by an artist friend, and the occasional message from a friend. It doesn't seem real positive nor does it make me eager to sign up.

            Then there is the general trend in social media that outrage gets liked or attention. I even see this on TheologyWeb. While there are exceptions, once a thread gets past 20 to 30 posts, it's highly likely to have devolved into a name-calling, ad hominin attacking exchange that does nothing to improve anyone's life. There do seem to be some people who more often than not prefer to fight rather than discuss. Its probably a cause (not the only cause by any means) of why our society has become more polarized.

            So what should be done? As much as I'm not a fan of government regulation, it's obvious to me that Facebook (and the others) won't regulate themselves. It's time for the government to start regulating social media. Probably not on content, but on privacy and how they emphasis or hide posts. I'm not thrilled with the idea of based on truth because today's misinformation can turn into tomorrow's fact. I'm not overly familiar with the European rules or California's but they might be a place to start.

            Also maybe they need to start regulating the algorithms. I work in the financial world and I've read discussion about how the regulators are going after banks who do loan approvals or declines by a computer algorithm. For example, regulate the algorithms so companies are punished if they cause teen girls to get links to diet products or anorexics sites,

            Yes, it will be a mess and tricky to get right. But the current system isn't working.
            Having bounced around the country (and indeed parts of the world), with friends scattered to the 4 corners of the globe, facebook is a valuable way to keep up to date on what they are doing.

            I've had some close friends that I've stopped interacting with on facebook because they've gone too far politically in one direction or the other. I see their posts and it's usually strawmen or misinformation about one side of the aisle or the other, or one political issue or the other. I keep (for the most part) my political opinions to myself. If I do deal with a political issue, I comment on someones post. I never create posts about my political positions. Honestly, you never know when some whackjob is going to read something you post, and try to get you fired from your job because of it.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by CivilDiscourse View Post

              Having bounced around the country (and indeed parts of the world), with friends scattered to the 4 corners of the globe, facebook is a valuable way to keep up to date on what they are doing.

              I've had some close friends that I've stopped interacting with on facebook because they've gone too far politically in one direction or the other. I see their posts and it's usually strawmen or misinformation about one side of the aisle or the other, or one political issue or the other. I keep (for the most part) my political opinions to myself. If I do deal with a political issue, I comment on someones post. I never create posts about my political positions. Honestly, you never know when some whackjob is going to read something you post, and try to get you fired from your job because of it.
              That's probably the biggest issue with Social Media. A gotcha from a post you made ten or fifteen years ago. I'll bet there some people posting stuff this month who will have that post come back to bite them in the distant future.

              Personally, I have self-censored a few times on TheologyWeb for that reason.
              "For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings." Hosea 6:6

              "Theology can be an intellectual entertainment." Metropolitan Anthony Bloom

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Thoughtful Monk View Post

                That's probably the biggest issue with Social Media. A gotcha from a post you made ten or fifteen years ago. I'll bet there some people posting stuff this month who will have that post come back to bite them in the distant future.

                Personally, I have self-censored a few times on TheologyWeb for that reason.
                One of the most valuable aspects of facebook is that, all of a sudden, I'll hear from somebody who was in my youth group 50 years ago, and is now pastoring a church or serving as a missionary or whatever.

                Otherwise, I'd probably never know they had gone into the ministry, or service, or married and had kids, or whatever. It has been incredibly encouraging at times.
                The first to state his case seems right until another comes and cross-examines him.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Sparko View Post
                  Civics seems to be the only area that regularly devolves into name calling and fights. Which is why we were considering closing it down, since we are supposed to be a theology site, not a political one. I think it has gotten a little better since the last election but still is volatile.
                  I remember. I voted and then affirmed my vote to close the forum. I predict as the 2022 elections start filling the news, we'll be revisiting whether or not to close Civics.
                  "For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings." Hosea 6:6

                  "Theology can be an intellectual entertainment." Metropolitan Anthony Bloom

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Digital democracy
                    Humans can use knowledge for benefit or harm---its our choice.....

                    Taiwan developed an app that lets people decide on issues---the govt can then use that info to make laws and policies....
                    ex---
                    In one of the platform’s early successes, for example, the topic at issue was how to regulate the ride-hailing company Uber, which had—as in many places around the world—run into fierce opposition from local taxi drivers. As new people joined the online debate, they were shown and asked to vote on comments that ranged from calls to ban Uber or subject it to strict regulation, to calls to let the market decide, to more general statements such as “I think that Uber is a business model that can create flexible jobs.”

                    Within a few days, the voting had coalesced to define two groups, one pro-Uber and one, about twice as large, anti-Uber. But then the magic happened: as the groups sought to attract more supporters, their members started posting comments on matters that everyone could agree were important, such as rider safety and liability insurance. Gradually, they refined them to garner more votes. The end result was a set of seven comments that enjoyed almost universal approval, containing such recommendations as “The government should set up a fair regulatory regime,” “Private passenger vehicles should be registered,” and “It should be permissible for a for-hire driver to join multiple fleets and platforms.” The divide between pro- and anti-Uber camps had been replaced by consensus on how to create a level playing field for Uber and the taxi firms, protect consumers, and create more competition. Tang herself took those suggestions into face-to-face talks with Uber, the taxi drivers, and experts, which led the government to adopt new regulations along the lines vTaiwan had produced.

                    https://www.technologyreview.com/201...urce-its-laws/

                    however, govts that do not want to give up power and control would not favor such an app/platform?....to give control "to the people" might seem like a threat?......

                    Division/divisiveness might make money...but if one is ingenious enough...who is to say consensus -making/unity cannot make money? It might simply be because of a lack of imagination?
                    Rather than regulating facebook---giving people more alternatives might be a better option?......it would preserve freedom and choice. Platforms that build consensus and empower might be less stressful than those that foster division....if so, they will eventually win over the market share?.....

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Thoughtful Monk View Post
                      In light of the Facebook whistleblower revelations, I'm surprised no one has started a thread about social media. So...

                      Disclosure: TheologyWeb is my only social media account. My wife is on Facebook.

                      The premise of Facebook is good but the execution seems to have gone badly. After watching if for a few years, it certainly seems to me that the only thing Mr. Zuckerberg cares about is money and the more of it he has, the better. The last ads I saw on TV for Facebook emphasized finding friends with common interests. Certainly listening to my wife describe what she sees, it doesn't seem to work that way. I can't recall her saying anything about here's a nice group to join up with. What I hear about are ads, her soap opera updates, a picture posted by an artist friend, and the occasional message from a friend. It doesn't seem real positive nor does it make me eager to sign up.

                      Then there is the general trend in social media that outrage gets liked or attention. I even see this on TheologyWeb. While there are exceptions, once a thread gets past 20 to 30 posts, it's highly likely to have devolved into a name-calling, ad hominin attacking exchange that does nothing to improve anyone's life. There do seem to be some people who more often than not prefer to fight rather than discuss. Its probably a cause (not the only cause by any means) of why our society has become more polarized.

                      So what should be done? As much as I'm not a fan of government regulation, it's obvious to me that Facebook (and the others) won't regulate themselves. It's time for the government to start regulating social media. Probably not on content, but on privacy and how they emphasis or hide posts. I'm not thrilled with the idea of based on truth because today's misinformation can turn into tomorrow's fact. I'm not overly familiar with the European rules or California's but they might be a place to start.

                      Also maybe they need to start regulating the algorithms. I work in the financial world and I've read discussion about how the regulators are going after banks who do loan approvals or declines by a computer algorithm. For example, regulate the algorithms so companies are punished if they cause teen girls to get links to diet products or anorexics sites,

                      Yes, it will be a mess and tricky to get right. But the current system isn't working.
                      I suspect no one was quick to start a thread about it because it looks obviously staged. "Oh look, FB is a danger to our children, therefore we need to give government more power to regulate its content. We must protect the children!"
                      "What am I doing here?" -- Joe Biden 2021

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by seanD View Post

                        I suspect no one was quick to start a thread about it because it looks obviously staged. "Oh look, FB is a danger to our children, therefore we need to give government more power to regulate its content. We must protect the children!"
                        The whole whistleblower thing looked incredibly orchestrated.

                        I'm always still in trouble again

                        "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
                        "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
                        "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Thoughtful Monk View Post
                          In light of the Facebook whistleblower revelations, I'm surprised no one has started a thread about social media. So...

                          Disclosure: TheologyWeb is my only social media account. My wife is on Facebook.

                          The premise of Facebook is good but the execution seems to have gone badly. After watching if for a few years, it certainly seems to me that the only thing Mr. Zuckerberg cares about is money and the more of it he has, the better. The last ads I saw on TV for Facebook emphasized finding friends with common interests. Certainly listening to my wife describe what she sees, it doesn't seem to work that way. I can't recall her saying anything about here's a nice group to join up with. What I hear about are ads, her soap opera updates, a picture posted by an artist friend, and the occasional message from a friend. It doesn't seem real positive nor does it make me eager to sign up.

                          Then there is the general trend in social media that outrage gets liked or attention. I even see this on TheologyWeb. While there are exceptions, once a thread gets past 20 to 30 posts, it's highly likely to have devolved into a name-calling, ad hominin attacking exchange that does nothing to improve anyone's life. There do seem to be some people who more often than not prefer to fight rather than discuss. Its probably a cause (not the only cause by any means) of why our society has become more polarized.

                          So what should be done? As much as I'm not a fan of government regulation, it's obvious to me that Facebook (and the others) won't regulate themselves. It's time for the government to start regulating social media. Probably not on content, but on privacy and how they emphasis or hide posts. I'm not thrilled with the idea of based on truth because today's misinformation can turn into tomorrow's fact. I'm not overly familiar with the European rules or California's but they might be a place to start.

                          Also maybe they need to start regulating the algorithms. I work in the financial world and I've read discussion about how the regulators are going after banks who do loan approvals or declines by a computer algorithm. For example, regulate the algorithms so companies are punished if they cause teen girls to get links to diet products or anorexics sites,

                          Yes, it will be a mess and tricky to get right. But the current system isn't working.
                          I haven't checked any of the studies showing it, but Facebook seems to be detrimental to youth, even their founder agrees. That alone should be enough to not allow our youth on it.

                          More importantly, government gives these companies legitimacy.

                          I would immediately forbid any government agency from having any official presence on social media. Especially snapface and Twitter.

                          Liberals are happy now, both of those social medias are heavily biased to the left.

                          If we decouple them from government, then actual oversight can happen.

                          For instance, why in the hell do I have to hear about Twitter banning some government official? Are we mad? Does Twitter matter whatsoever? But no, a whole lotta airtime and hoopla was given over a meaningless thing. It's insane
                          Last edited by Maranatha; 10-14-2021, 03:49 PM.

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