Friday, August 10, 2018

Facebook Banned Infowars. Now What? -- NYT

Final paragraphs from a timely reality check:
"There are also valid questions about why Infowars got so popular in the first place, and whether attention-maximizing platforms like Facebook and YouTube are designed in way so that people like Mr. Jones are incentivized to push the boundaries of acceptable speech.

After all, these platforms didn’t just host Infowars content for those who were seeking it — they actively promoted it to millions of people for years, through algorithmic feeds and recommendation engines that decide which videos to show you next. Could these platforms be redesigned so that the next Alex Jones never gets that kind of boost, and remains on the ideological fringes?

These questions will have to wait. For now, tech leaders seem satisfied to have dealt with their Infowars problems, at least temporarily. They will return to their defensive crouch, hiding their power behind policies, making small changes under pressure, and hoping that nobody notices the size of their footprints."
Facebook Banned Infowars. Now What? -- NYT

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