Exposed to a variety of opinions on the Internet? Probably Not.

by admin on July 27, 2011 · 2 comments

The Internet was supposed to be the ultimate platform for democracy; a way to be exposed to a wide variety of opinions.

Years ago researchers declared that those with liberal arts college educations made the best leaders. People who sought or were exposed to differing opinions and understood multiple points of view gained an intrinsic understanding as to how things worked.

The web was supposed to further this philosophy; we were all to be budding social scientists regardless of education or background.

Like some philosophical movements, this turns out to be horse-hocky.

See an article from the Christian Science Monitor (source below) as to who you are exposed to in Facebook and probably all other social media sites via linking strategies (or algorithms).

It seems that we are exposed to who we most frequently interact with thus if you and your nephew are friends but interact infrequently, you don’t see his posts unless you go to his profile.

The people you most interact with are more than likely kindred spirits who do not bring new topics or understandings to the table which means you continue to feed yourself with one point of view.

Which dismisses the glory and promise of the Internet.

Bottom-line; people who immerse themselves in one point of view are boring and simi-illerate as to the ways of the world. They make lousy leaders.

But that’s how Facebook (and probably all other social media sites) work.

The antidote? Internet search strategies. Where you end up in search engine inquiries does make a difference in  exposing people to your material.

If you and others are willing to be exposed to different points of view, being on the first page of search results is the antidote to social media sameness.

Best, Len.






MC Theory July 30, 2011 at 1:56 pm

Sadly it doesn’t just affect your facebook page it also affects Google search. If, on your fb page you have typically right leaning political views and “like” related topics, when you type things like Barack Obama into Google the search results deliberately lead you to top results of things like Fox news. This is only one example but it extends well beyond politics. I suggest using Duck Duck Go as a search engine as there is no tracking. You don’t get as many results but you don’t get marketed to either.

admin July 31, 2011 at 9:18 am

Wonderful, insightful reply. Many thanks, Len.

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