the internet bubble
is anyone else finding that the internet is giving them the same kind of content - which further embeds their opinion and view ? its as if the searches are curated to further prove your own biases. but i dont want that. the internet is getting boring cause of it. i remember a time when there used to be hundreds of pages on a search engine, all were diverse sites and from different walks of life and backgrounds
now it feels like everything is the same. the same discussions. the same viewpoints. the same hacks and tips and tricks. makes me wonder, where have i heard this before ?
im starting to think that the whole internet believes what i believe and have experienced. which is not true ! theres so many different people out there they all cannot be like me !
how do you train the algorithms to stop convincing you of your own views ? how can i actually get away from this internet bubble ?
im more drawn to the local library now, because at least its self directed and im not always gonna get exactly what i already know
( btw, this subject is in part the influence behind the post i made about trusting my own ideas rather than seeking them from elsewhere )
ultimately i wanna leave the internet behind as my main pastime. i wanna get out in the world. but i also know how silly sometimes it can be, i wont find lifes answer out there, or even online. darn it to our internal striving for novelty!
That's a topic that has been discussed quite a lot in mainstream media during the past years.
The algorithms that Google, Meta, Amazon etc. use follow a simple idea: If you like something, they'll give you more of that. In reverse, this means you'll get less of what you despise, or are neutral towards, and of things that are so new that they haven't been liked much so far.
They're like a librarian that knows your reading habits and suggests the exact same kind of books over and over again, without being aware of your deeper wish to learn new things.
Here are some ideas to work against this bias:
- Subscribe things you don't like. A magazine, a channel, a group, whatever. Choose things that don't represent your convictions but are still morally acceptable for you.
- Like things you're neutral towards. If you're only halfway happy with something, still give it a thumbs-up. The idea is: You don't like the content itself, but the fact that it was presented to you.
- Use obfuscation tools to broaden your footprint. You install these plugins into your browser. They over-interact with websites you visit, to hide your real intentions. For example, they may click every advertisement, thus hiding which ones you really looked at.
The proposal algorithms are sold as clever, but are really dumb. For example, Amazon keeps recommending me nonsense products. Baby stuff without having a baby? A second lawn mower?
I'd especially love if Spotify, Amazon, or Apple redesigned their music suggestion algorithms. They should insert much more random content into the personalized automatic playlists. And then consider the user's reaction to that stuff. It would be an auto-advertising machine for new music...
It is a bummer. In the beginning, people found my books and web site by searching on key words. Now they (and we) find only the ones with the highest views, which, often is totally out-of-date because something that was posted long ago will, most likely, have the most views.
@chldomn5, as you've suggested, perhaps leave the internet behind for now (depending on your age, you might think that's a sacriligious statement!).
I frequent a lot of second-hand stores and am always buying books about all kind of subjects I know nothing about (usually history and biography). I've learned all kinds of interesting things.
Then there's the "random" factor. On the internet you gotta search for specific things, or it gives you what it thinks you want. In second-hand bookstores you never know what you'll run across. I've discovered so many interesting books just by chance.
In the past year or so I've deliberately backed away from Twitter and FB as far as how much time I spend and what weight I give what I see and read on them. I've been in a much better place mentally since giving myself that break. Human brains aren't set up to process the overwhelming volumes of information our magic screens fire at us. Algorithms are there to try to gatekeep things but that too has its deep flaws (as you note in the OP). So... yeah. I'm at the point of saying that the Internet is a nice tool but I need to be in the community and being real with real people around me more.
the community idea is where im feeling more pull now. being involved in groups socially. that will come with time
ilike the suggestion about books, i feel that too. you never know what will turn up
yeah i used tp find random websites, people own personal blogs or old free hosted sites. seems all i get now is ads where you can only read 5 percent of the screen and the article only tells me what i already know just in a different way anyway. shame its stopped suggesting your books now....
i agree with vast volumes of info, theres too much i wont have the time to ever know realistically, and it seems just knowing slightly more than the average knower in that area gets you far enough ahead in terms of knowledge and awareness
i wish i could also listen to a podcast or watch a video without an ad every minute and a half. what is going on there ? thats worse than how television got, 5 mins ads every 10 mins seemed like overkill at the time.
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