The role of Social Media in our current Society

Discussion in 'Politics and Society' started by BigJoeNobody, Jul 24, 2018.

  1. BigJoeNobody

    BigJoeNobody Professional Argument Attractor

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    I know I haven't popped up in a while, but I figured due to some issues in my personal life I feel like I'd benefit from seeing others perspective. over the past 2 years I've seen people (primarily older crowd, which may be important) progressively move more and more to the radical right. People who still claim to be moderate or non associated claiming to take the high ground with "Trump is your president" and "Liberals hate [insert item that is newly important]". Beyond that there are more and more posts popping up about how "Liberals are either illegal, criminal, children, or on government assistance." I'm not saying there aren't Republican bashing posts, but there are far fewer that degrade the humanity or rights of the targeted group from the left. more times than not the Right is focused on arresting, expelling or in extreme cases killing the Left while the reverse is much less common.

    The issue I see is that an older generation is spreading information at rates previously held to teenage girls. I am constantly reminded that it is "just Facebook, who cares" while I watch people I know and love sink further and further into a hate filled rage. If you correct their errors (factual errors) they get offended, and threaten you. Their friends jump in and defend them often with insults and threats. From someone who has seen the rise of social media and followed it since early on (yes I had a Myspace :( ) I know there is a lot that passes through that simply isn't true and needs to be checked before spreading. I understand how information multiplies its audience with shares, hence why they always want you to share these hate filled memes and such. It has now gotten to where the people who are just now getting into social media (older generations in particular), while at an age they care about politics and social issues, are seemingly brainwashed into ideas that anything other than what a certain group says is inherently false while adhering to the idea that anything they (the Right supporters) say is either harmless or true. Even to the extent that facts that are commonly known even by the poster is rejected in favor of the meme with a supporting message for their party or group.
     
  2. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea Well-Known Member

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    Good to see you Joe, hope things are well.
    I know of this shame...
     
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  3. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    referred to as gossip.

    valid point when unwarranted gender and age reference removed...everyone knows that this is not contained by either....or they've never been in a golf club locker room.

    media has changed...it has become public....not controlled only by those with the money to own and distribute large newspapers, radio or television...

    pirate radio has moved to the world stage with color video
     
  4. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea Well-Known Member

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    Information becomes democratic, but these things can easily turn us into mobs. I think critical thinking can be lacking at times, but no one can be forced to think critically. Accountability for misinformation is exceedingly hard to pin down, penalties for posting false or distorted information on facebooks seems like an unsettling path to take. I hope there are other options because I don't want to live in a political tribal society either.
     
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  5. BigJoeNobody

    BigJoeNobody Professional Argument Attractor

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    I say this as "I have seen". hence my personal observation. I am aware that it doesn't account for the entirety, just what I've witnessed.
    I agree, I do think most people are starting to understand the importance of fact checking and verification, but others are stubborn on the "it's just facebook" argument. I really don't want laws restricting things like that (although I would appreciate the law stating that news agencies be factual, at least to a minimum due diligence level be restored.), but it may be necessary.
     
  6. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    I think we will see more and more pages doing their own fact checking...with their own bias of course...and more and more of us self selecting which news we watch based on our bias...

    the charts of bias will become well known, the tenor of sources categorized... the net is a game changer over television news... as are the 'comedy' news shows...television news will be relegated to its corner as it struggles with its own demise.
     
  7. Phyllis Sidhe_Uaine

    Phyllis Sidhe_Uaine Junior Moderator, Intro Moderator

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    Everything has its biases; some are better at hiding them.

    Yes, I'm including :kitty:s.

    Phyllis Sidhe_Uaine
     
  8. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea Well-Known Member

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    You don't think some things are more or less bias?
     
  9. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    Hi BJN —
    It's interesting that politically, since the emergence of socialism in Europe (Has it ever really gained a foothold in the US?), politics was tripartite; you had the conservative right, the socialist left, and the liberal, generally a centrist, position.

    That has polarised increasingly with the emergence of a strident right that sees everything left of itself as 'looney left' ... Here in the UK we have a right-wing government tearing itself apart over in-house power struggles over Brexit the hard right drawing a lot of support over 'little England' dreams of empire, racism, etc., etc. It should be a sitting-duck target for an organised opposition ... but ...

    The Labout Party (left) is currently being wrecked by a concerted Jewish lobby — all three mainline Jewish newspapers carried exactly the same front page — is currently intent on wrecking the Labour Party as it stands under popular left-wing leadership. The leader is making a principle stand on the European Accord on anti-Semitism which means that any criticism of Israel, it's politics, etc., is de facto anti-semitic and therefore unacceptable.
    (Bearing in mind the Israeli Govt. has just passed legislation which effectively demotes Arab-Isrealis to second-class citizens, demotes Arab languages, etc. Don't even try and convince an Irish Catholic that this is not a bad thing ... )

    The Liberal (centrist) party had vanished without trace ...

    Never gonna happen.

    Here in the UK, soc med is being question for its negative impact on mental health. Bearing in mind that without soc med, people like the Kardassians would, as Rich Hall pointed out, be no more than 'bimbos hanging out in the mall', as it is they are a global phenomenon, famous for being famous, and the poster-people for just how vacuous, shallow and thoughtless popular opinion actually is.
     
  10. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    Id say 'tribalist' is the default setting?

    People have to work at being PC, and still have blindspots ...
     
  11. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    Exactly. It's a self-affirming cycle of ignorance.

    Part of that gamechange in that journalists now chase and parrot popular opinion ...

    It's made worse because the population generally 'don't know'.

    Part of that laziness is the location of media in 'trendy' media-capital hubs. The UK media, for example, was blindsided by Brexit because only a very few journalists actually talked to or listened to voices outside of London (other than favourite soundbite hotspots) ... Those whop did just stood and said, 'We told you this would happen' while the Govt was utterly shocked.

    Foreign correspondents are sent to faraway places and are told they have a budget for a one-day hotel stopover ...

    Traditional media can simply no longer afford to pay journalists to spend time on issues that's needed to produce anything other that a trawl of Facebook and Twitter ... so Facebook/Twitter will become the baseline.

    What's 'news' is what's trending.
     
  12. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    I don't see the kardashians rise due to social media....but reality telly...just like trump
     
  13. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    Actually I think the self policing pages of fake news will be a benefit...like snopes/fact checker...the fact checkers will be fact checked...

    We will have charts like this https://www.marketwatch.com/story/h...robably-wont-agree-with-this-chart-2018-02-28 [​IMG]
    Assisting us in determining where our news sources our social media filters align...

    as the algorithms and the tech develops we will have a brave new world...the ai will tell us what to think...and it will be good.
     
  14. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure there is a default setting. I think tribalism is, along with other, a consent force in our minds, but I don't think any mode is more 'our natural state' than any other. What I was thinking was what you mentioned, the self-affirming cycle, or bubble that makes us less and less likely to really listen to opposing ideas.

    Someone once wrote here a long time ago that the more they listened to different interpretations the more sure they where of their own ideas. I think most of us do this to some extent, and it can have some difficult consequences.

    I think this is so relevant. Is there a way to un-business news?

    I don't like this chart, it's too neat. It makes me question how they rank these things.
     
  15. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    Did you read the boxes and the circles?
     
  16. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    I see no evidence of self policing?

    The mainstream media is policed by various structures ... so a newspaper make a fake calim on the front page, is challenged, and publishes a tucked-away aplogy/correction three days later on p12 ...

    There is no similar mechanism on social media, and the media platforms are actually against such measures, agreeing only if backed up against the wall.
     
  17. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    I think that is so, so naive, frankly.

    Tech developers and their algorithms are there in place to manipulate us, we are where the money is. There's no profit in truth.
     
  18. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    In kids, it seems to me, they start off without prejudice, and then by quite early on there foundations of prejudice are laid down by nurture, culture, etc.

    But I have also read that as part of the evolutionary process, the collective emerged as more successful than the individual, so there is a hard-wired tendency towards to collective, social, etc, which gets programmed as we grow up.

    Yes, I see that as part of the process?
     
  19. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    It is like wikipedia or an encyclopedia...while you can't use them as a direct reference in a paper...you can read their references and links and find the source.

    Same with social media...there will be people you trust to post decent info and stuff you don't...
     
  20. StevePame

    StevePame Administrator Admin

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    I like this as an accessible way to get people engaged, so long as people take the time to track down the source.

    Both my generation, and the generation of my students, seem to struggle with this second step. I fear it isn’t confined to the two of us.

    I’ve lost count of the number of direct Wikipedia citations I see in papers...
     

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