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Former Facebook exec says social media is ripping apart society
Chamath Palihapitiya, who joined Facebook in 2007 and became its vice president for user growth, said he feels “tremendous guilt” about the company he helped make. “I think we have created tools that are ripping apart the social fabric of how society works,” he told an audience at Stanford Graduate School of Business, before recommending people take a “hard break” from social media.

Palihapitiya’s criticisms were aimed not only at Facebook, but the wider online ecosystem. “The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops we’ve created are destroying how society works,” he said, referring to online interactions driven by “hearts, likes, thumbs-up.” “No civil discourse, no cooperation; misinformation, mistruth. And it’s not an American problem — this is not about Russians ads. This is a global problem.”
Facebook  socialmedia  culture  society  dopamine  disinformation  dystopia  2017 
5 days ago by zzkt
The Intercept -- The U.S. Media Yesterday Suffered its Most Humiliating Debacle in Ages: Now Refuses All Transparency Over What Happened by Glenn Greenwald
'...It is, of course, completely plausible that one source might innocently misread a date on a document. But how is it remotely plausible that multiple sources could all innocently and in good faith misread the date in exactly the same way, all to cause to be disseminated a blockbuster revelation about Trump/Russia/WikiLeaks collusion? This is the critical question that CNN simply refuses to answer. In other words, CNN refuses to provide the most minimal transparency to enable the public to understand what happened here. -- Why does this matter so much? For so many significant reasons: To begin with, it’s hard to overstate how fast, far and wide this false story traveled. Democratic Party pundits, operatives and journalists with huge social media platforms predictably jumped on the story immediately, announcing that it proved collusion between Trump and Russia (through WikiLeaks). -- ... It’s hard to quantify exactly how many people were deceived – filled with false news and propaganda – by the CNN story. But thanks to Democratic-loyal journalists and operatives who decree every Trump/Russia claim to be true without seeing any evidence, it’s certainly safe to say that many hundreds of thousands of people, almost certainly millions, were exposed to these false claims. -- Surely anyone who has any minimal concerns about journalistic accuracy – which would presumably include all the people who have spent the last year lamenting Fake News, propaganda, Twitter bots and the like – would demand an accounting as to how a major U.S. media outlet ended up filling so many people’s brains with totally false news. That alone should prompt demands from CNN for an explanation about what happened here. No Russian Facebook ad or Twitter bot could possibly have anywhere near the impact as this CNN story had when it comes to deceiving people with blatantly inaccurate information. -- ... Second, the “multiple sources” who fed CNN this false information did not confine themselves to that network. They were apparently very busy eagerly spreading the false information to as many media outlets as they could find. In the middle of the day, CBS News claimed that it had independently “confirmed” CNN’s story about the email, and published its own breathless article discussing the grave implications of this discovered collusion. -- Most embarrassing of all was what MSNBC did. You just have to watch this report from its “intelligence and national security correspondent” Ken Dilanian to believe it. Like CBS, Dilanian also claimed that he independently “confirmed” the false CNN report from “two sources with direct knowledge of this.” Dilanian, whose career in the U.S. media continues to flourish the more he is exposed as someone who faithfully parrots what the CIA tells him to say (since that is one of the most coveted and valued attributes in US journalism), spent three minutes mixing evidence-free CIA claims as fact with totally false assertions about what his multiple “sources with direct knowledge” told him about all this. Please watch this – again, not just the content but the tenor and tone of how they “report” – as it is Baghdad-Bob-level embarrassing: ... Think about what this means. It means that at least two – and possibly more – sources, which these media outlets all assessed as credible in terms of having access to sensitive information, all fed the same false information to multiple news outlets at the same time. For multiple reasons, the probability is very high that these sources were Democratic members of the House Intelligence Committee (or their high-level staff members), which is the committee that obtained access to Trump Jr.’s emails, although it’s certainly possible that it’s someone else. We won’t know until these news outlets deign to report this crucial information to the public: which “multiple sources” acted jointly to disseminate incredibly inflammatory, false information to the nation’s largest news outlets? -- ... At minimum, these networks – CNN, MSNBC and CBS – have to either identify who purposely fed them this blatantly false information, or explain how it’s possible that “multiple sources” all got the same information wrong in innocence and good faith. Until they do that, their cries and protests the next time they’re attacked as “Fake News” should fall on deaf ears, since the real author of those attacks – the reason those attacks resonate – is themselves and their own conduct.' -- Naturally, the common people don’t want war, but after all, it is the leaders of a country who determine its policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag people along whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliamentary system or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. This is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifist for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in every country. ~ Hermann Goering
internet  journalism  minitrue  minipax  twominuteshate  disinformation  echochamber  flood  #socialization 
7 days ago by adamcrowe
Bots stoke racial strife in Virginia governor's race - POLITICO
I am convinced the main aim of the bot campaign was to stoke the hillbot vs berniebro drama, delegitimise both sides, and depress D turnout.
fakenews  Russia  trump  disinformation 
8 days ago by yorksranter
A Field Guide to Fake News
"A Field Guide to Fake News explores the use of digital methods to trace the production, circulation and reception of fake news online."
disinformation  misinformation  news  tools 
10 days ago by sdp
#Election2016: Propaganda-lytics & Weaponized Shadow Trackers
Oh, here it is. Finally, one of my fears has actually totally happened. The web tracking industry was involved in the spreading of fake news and manipulation in the 2016 election. It wasn't just confined to the spheres of Facebook and Twitter, people susceptible to this propaganda were identified all over the web and targeted with fake news. This isn't quite how I ever envisioned it, I thought the threat would come more from within, not be used by Russia against us. But close enough. SHIT
advertising  tracking  surveillance  manipulation  fake_news  propaganda  election_2016  disinformation 
15 days ago by jcretan
How 550 Facebook Users Spread Britain First Content To Hundreds Of Thousands Of People
--C for effort!, interesting mostly because of the topic. The analysis as such seems sub-standard given how it has been described. Need better data journalism.
buzzfeed  social_media  misinformation  disinformation  contagion  social_networks  britain  brexit 
18 days ago by rvenkat
Venezuela and Russia Teamed Up to Push Pro-Catalan Fake News
97% of posts about Catalonia were Russian trolls/bots, and some of the stuff written by RT was straight up fake. Assange got involved.
social_media  disinformation  propaganda  fake_news  Russia  Spain  Catalonia 
19 days ago by jcretan
[1705.06947] The Web Centipede: Understanding How Web Communities Influence Each Other Through the Lens of Mainstream and Alternative News Sources
As the number and the diversity of news outlets on the Web grow, so does the opportunity for "alternative" sources of information to emerge. Using large social networks like Twitter and Facebook, misleading, false, or agenda-driven information can quickly and seamlessly spread online, deceiving people or influencing their opinions. Also, the increased engagement of tightly knit communities, such as Reddit and 4chan, further compounds the problem, as their users initiate and propagate alternative information, not only within their own communities, but also to different ones as well as various social media. In fact, these platforms have become an important piece of the modern information ecosystem, which, thus far, has not been studied as a whole.
In this paper, we begin to fill this gap by studying mainstream and alternative news shared on Twitter, Reddit, and 4chan. By analyzing millions of posts around several axes, we measure how mainstream and alternative news flows between these platforms. Our results indicate that alt-right communities within 4chan and Reddit can have a surprising level of influence on Twitter, providing evidence that "fringe" communities often succeed in spreading alternative news to mainstream social networks and the greater Web.

-- another paper illustrating the importance of inter-network and intra-network structure and dynamics, network specific virality.

--useful for lectures on contagion?

-- dilute versions with context for in-a-hurry students


conspiracy_theories  misinformation  disinformation  social_media  social_networks  networked_public_sphere  epidemiology_of_representations  network_data_analysis  networks  teaching 
5 weeks ago by rvenkat

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