Here's a Look Inside Facebook's Data Wars - The New York Times
www.nytimes.com
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CrowdTangle, "running quasi-independently inside Facebook since being acquired in 2016" was broken up because ... "journalists and researchers were using CrowdTangle... to analyze Facebook ... dig up information considered unhelpful" by Alex Schultz, CMO & VP of analytics. His "Team Selective Disclosure won" - sh…

Cory Doctorow: IP – Locus Online
locusmag.com
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First a definition of (the importance of) "Interoperability – the thing Facebook uses to slurp stuff in from the open web – is the key to self-determination." Without it:you're trapped: "leaving Facebook means leaving your communities, your relationships... your presence on Facebook is the reason someone else can’t go...you&#x…

Facebook Is Dead (It Just Doesn’t Know It Yet)
bettermarketing.pub
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Interesting piece on the reverse side of the network effect: the more people leave, the faster the remainder leave. So what will make people leave?Gen Z want privacy, hate bullying/speech, don’t like ads and think "Facebook is for moms and grandparents""Millennials Are Ready to Ditch... too old to bicker with strangers... [and] stil…

Facebook Manipulated the News You See to Appease Republicans, Insiders Say – Mother Jones
www.motherjones.com
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When changing their Newsfeed algorithm, Facebook's tests found "a dramatic impact on the reach of right-wing “junk sites,”... [by] January 2018 a second iteration dialed up the harm to progressive-leaning news organizations instead... Mother Jones was singled out as one that would suffer... Daily Wire was identified as one that would be…

Opinion | Facebook serves as an echo chamber, especially for conservatives. Blame its algorithm. - The Washington Post
www.washingtonpost.com

Summary of peer-reviewed research - “Understanding Echo Chambers and Filter Bubbles: The Impact of Social Media on Diversification and Partisan Shifts in News Consumption” - by its authors, who found:more time spent on Facebook, the more polarized their online news consumption becomes...Facebook usage is five times more polarizing for conservative…

Domestic v. foreign disinformation: A question of timing (US2020 Disinformation news, ed. 4)
medium.com
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There are two possible reasons why we are not talking as much about foreign interference. Both could be true. Only one is good news.

Breaking democracy to hold power (US2020 Disinformation news, ed. 3)
medium.com
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How a decades-long election delegitimisation campaign, amplified by social media disinformation, intersects with the death of a Chief Justice in a GoT-worthy season finale of “US democracy: Endgame”.

From foreign meddling to pink slime (US2020 Disinformation news, ed. 2)
medium.com
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This edition’s 9 articles span the real meaning of “foreign meddling” and domestic flashpoints, social media platform preparations for Election Night and beyond, and how media has to go beyond factchecking as it tackles “pink slime” (yes, it’s a thing).

A tech exec says history will frown on Zuckerberg and co.
www.fastcompany.com

I put together my own cheat sheet to keep in my back pocket for heated conversations to come

Zuckerberg, Trump and the protests: Facebook’s muddled makeover | Financial Times
www.ft.com
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Facebook is wary of being drawn further into a political argument ahead ... divisive presidential election ... ... steer clear of fact-checking political advertisements... keen not to antagonise Mr Trump ... claiming that social media platforms are biased against Republican ... purely a business decision ... ubiquitous... it must always align with…

Dear Facebook employees, - Barry Schnitt
medium.com
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"We believe in Facebook’s mission that giving people tools to make the world more open is a better way to combat ignorance or deception than censorship.” It turns out that I was wrong... There are more options than just being “open” and “censorship”... The more successful Facebook is ... the more ignorance, deception ...in the world...Facebo…

Big Tech’s Big Defector | The New Yorker
www.newyorker.com
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McNamee has mentored many of the people who have transformed Silicon Valley... advised Mark Zuckerberg to turn down Yahoo’s offer... a billion dollars... encouraged Zuckerberg to hire Sheryl Sandberg...Ten days before the Presidential election... “I am disappointed. I am embarrassed. I am ashamed,”... I was expecting them to take it seriously... t…

Disinformation For Hire: How A New Breed Of PR Firms Is Selling Lies Online
www.buzzfeednews.com
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for manipulating public opinion... automation and artificial intelligence “can quickly generate traffic and publicity much faster than people.”...If disinformation in 2016 was characterized by Macedonian spammers... Russian trolls... 2020 is shaping up to be the year communications pros for hire provide sophisticated online propaganda operations .…

Let’s Not Put the Government in Charge of Moderating Facebook
onezero.medium.com
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proposal ... for a U.S. government agency to regulate online speech... on all social media.... fails to make the case... the idea that a government agency would necessarily do better is naive... think about exactly who would appoint that agency’s leader, and to what political ends they might seek to put it...

Why Facebook’s approach to misinformation ultimately fails
medium.com
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Facebook needs to engage its users in more substantive acts of participation. ... mistakenly assumes that locally respected fact-checking NGOs can supply the trust Facebook itself is lacking. But NGOs lack standing... In a liberal democracy, NGOs can legitimately elevate arguments and offer counterarguments to government positions... we assume arg…

Why Fears of Fake News Are Overhyped – Reasonable Doubt – Medium
medium.com
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many of the initial conclusions ...about the scope of fake news consumption, and its effects on our politics, were exaggerated or incorrect. Relatively few people consumed this form of content directly during the 2016 campaign, and even fewer did so before the 2018 election. Fake news consumption is concentrated among a narrow subset of Americans …

Fighting fake news is a losing battle, but there are other ways to win the war.
mondaynote.com
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the next iteration of technology applied to politics will be a huge leap forward with a greater ability to target people... address each of the 156 million of registered voters on the US with personalized messages.... a falsehood delivered in a personalized way is likely to be more efficient but less visible than a blatant lie put on Twitter; it w…

Don’t #DeleteFacebook. Take back control with digital minimalism
medium.com
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To #DeleteFacebook is to throw the baby out with the bathwater without solving the underlying problem.This is not another post on the benefits or evils of Facebook — you can figure that out for yourself…- my latest post accepted into The Mission

Designing Against Misinformation – Facebook Design
medium.com
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we found that there were four ways the original disputed flags experience could be improved... Disputed flags buried critical information ... could sometimes backfire... Requiring two false ratings slowed down our ability to provide additional context and often meant that we weren’t able to do so at all.... We only applied Disputed flags to “fa…

Don’t Delete Facebook. Do Something About It.
www.nytimes.com
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When I need to focus on a project or relax a bit, I turn off the noise that comes from Facebook ... delete your account... But don’t pretend it will make a difference to Facebook or to the state of the world... if tens of thousands of Americans quit Facebook tomorrow, the company would barely feel it... Its growth has plateaued in the United St…

‘I made Steve Bannon’s psychological warfare tool’: meet the data war whistleblower
www.theguardian.com
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Wylie ... the gay Canadian vegan who somehow ended up creating “Steve Bannon’s psychological warfare mindfuck tool”.... In 2014 Steve Bannon ... was Wylie’s boss. And Robert Mercer... Republican donor, was Cambridge Analytica’s investor... to bring big data and social media to an established military methodology – “information operations” – then t…

Inside The Partisan Fight For Your News Feed
www.buzzfeed.com
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How ideologues, opportunists, growth hackers, and internet marketers built a massive new universe of partisan news on the web and on Facebook... publishers are generating hundreds of thousands of dollars a month in revenue, with small operations easily earning five figures thanks to one website and at least one associated Facebook page... since T…

Confronting a Nightmare for Democracy – David Carroll – Medium
medium.com
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Cambridge Analytica (part of SCL Group Ltd.) constructed a significant data set based on US voter rolls... Some respected observers argue the firm’s psychographic profiling methodologies may not be nearly as potent as its sales pitch suggests... the firm’s psychographic practices remain as unreviewable as the campaign’s voter advertising. Journal…

Facebook's 'Town Hall' is probably the best thing the social network has ever done
mashable.com
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Facebook officially released a tool Monday that lets its users — all desktop and mobile users in the U.S. — easily contact their local officials. It's called "Town Hall," reminiscent of what Facebook likes to see itself as, especially in political discussion. 

30/03/2017
The filter bubble isn't just Facebook's fault – it's yours
theconversation.com
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to put the blame solely on the company is to overlook how people use the site, and how they themselves create a filter bubble effect through their actions.... Just as important as the algorithm is how people use the site and shape it around their own communications... people are actually exposed to a great deal of diversity through Facebook... But…

I read almost 50 articles on Fake News so you don’t have to (Topics, Dec 15; updated)
mathewlowry.myhub.ai
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A work in progress from an upcoming eponymous post. Another experiment with the enewsletter format: some initial thoughts on this seemingly intractable problem, with some of the source materials I’m studying.

Google, democracy and the truth about internet search | Technology | The Guardian
www.theguardian.com
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There’s large-scale, statistically significant research into the impact of search results on political views... Google is doing a horrible, horrible job of delivering answers here. It can and should do better... people are finally saying, ‘Gee, Facebook and Google really have a lot of power’ like it’s this big revelation. And it’s like, ‘D’oh.’”…

Fake News: Be Careful What You Wish For – Whither news? – Medium
medium.com
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Do we really want to set up Facebook or Google as censors ... to decide what is real and fake, true and false?

Capgras Syndrome in the Digital Age
nautil.us
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“Capgras delusions,” ... the belief that loved ones have been replaced by identical imposters... the brain has separate modules for analyzing the cognitive aspects of recognition, and for feeling the emotional aspects of familiarity... these functional fault lines in the social brain... have given rise to the contemporary Facebook generation... …

Inside Facebook’s (Totally Insane, Unintentionally Gigantic, Hyperpartisan) Political-Media Machine
mobile.nytimes.com
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a lot of media sources you don’t recognize ... a new and distinctive sort of operation ... political news and advocacy pages made specifically for Facebook... engineered to reach audiences exclusively in the news feed... Occupy Democrats; The Angry Patriot; US Chronicle... together make up 2016’s most disruptive, and least understood, force in med…

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