The Most Disturbing Thing About the Internet - The Filter Bubble.

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    May 16, 2011 2:32 PM GMT
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    May 16, 2011 10:47 PM GMT
    In almost every political debate we hear one refute the other with a well used line:

    "You are entitled to your own opinions but NOT your own facts."

    Sadly, with the information filters for our searches, it seems that Google believes that we are entitled to OUR OWN FACTS.

    This is dangerous. We all have a tendency to close our minds to information that contradicts our world view. We don't need Google, Yahoo and others reinforcing our bubbles of limited information.
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    May 16, 2011 11:02 PM GMT
    This explains why people seem to be getting stupider...search engines are keeping them that way by reinforcing their stupidity.
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    May 22, 2011 1:33 PM GMT
    I wonder if someone will try to start a new search engine with this dudes' opinion in mind, that would be interesting.
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    May 25, 2011 1:46 PM GMT
    yup Ive watched this talk already. Its kind of a concern but again you have options...
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    May 25, 2011 2:58 PM GMT
    charlitos saidyup Ive watched this talk already. Its kind of a concern but again you have options...



    What are these options?
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    May 25, 2011 3:12 PM GMT
    jim_e saidI wonder if someone will try to start a new search engine with this dudes' opinion in mind, that would be interesting.



    They did... Google scholar lists peer reviewed academic articles and papers on a subject
  • starboard5

    Posts: 969

    May 25, 2011 3:28 PM GMT
    excellent....thanks for posting. The link went out to all my friends.
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    May 25, 2011 3:51 PM GMT
    I like it being filtered...

    It's like the sunday newspaper...but someone else has gone ahead and removed variety, coupon, gardening, home, local news, society pages, cute animals etc

    and left me with business, world news, technology, it sounds perfect icon_razz.gif



  • CAtoFL

    Posts: 834

    May 25, 2011 4:22 PM GMT
    Truly interesting video. Thanks for sharing.

    Not sure how you code 'responsibility' into an algorithm. And if you leave it to the individual net users, I'm guessing that most will opt to receive 'comfortable' news and information instead of the 'challenging' type.

    Which is why 'curing' this becomes a very involved challenge. We have to change the tool AND we have to change how that tool is employed by the end-user.
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    May 25, 2011 5:11 PM GMT
    MsclDrew said
    jim_e saidI wonder if someone will try to start a new search engine with this dudes' opinion in mind, that would be interesting.



    They did... Google scholar lists peer reviewed academic articles and papers on a subject



    Yeah, I love Google Scholar but now I don't if I can trust it either. icon_neutral.gif
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    May 25, 2011 5:27 PM GMT
    As a librarian, I'd suggest this also highlights the importance of funding for libraries. Cities and universities/colleges pay a lot of money for access to databases which do not filter information (although many databases do offer personalization options).
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    May 25, 2011 5:41 PM GMT
    Would be nice to see a lower price point for public lexis-nexus searches.
  • xKorix

    Posts: 607

    May 25, 2011 5:56 PM GMT
    OMG SO DISTURBING
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    May 25, 2011 6:08 PM GMT
    Yeah, they need to have a control like they do for Porn and Spam:

    Strict
    Moderate
    No Filtering

    Strictly what you like
    A bit of what you like and may not like
    Everything (No Filtering)

    Of course, the web is already filtering. The Google results are the most popular sites with the most links back to them and most content change. This personalization seems like another filter on top of that.
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    May 25, 2011 6:13 PM GMT
    alphatrigger saidWould be nice to see a lower price point for public lexis-nexus searches.


    So would libraries! Obviously, there's an ongoing struggle for libraries to try and minimize the cost of access to databases such as LexisNexis. To be fair, most database vendors have really tried to control pricing because of ongoing budgetary concerns for libraries over the past 2-3 years, but we still see the occasional crazy price increase of 15-20% on an annual subscription. What's really insane is that, at least in the U.S., tax payers often pay twice for the information--once through grants to fund research and pay for faculty/reseracher salaries--and then again when for-profit publishers charge outlandish subscription fees.
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    May 25, 2011 6:32 PM GMT
    I have an example of a filter bubble.

    I'm an author on GoodReads.com, which is a site for authors and readers to connect. They have a link to Explore-Authors which lets you see Recent Posts from Author's Blogs (or only posts from your favorite authors called My Authors).

    But I found out from the site owners that Recent Posts is really recent blog posts that are most liked. Meaning, you can blog away on that site and unless someone discovers you randomly, the likelihood of any of your blog posts being seen is rare. I suggested three tabs:

    Recent/ Popular/ My Authors

    Recent (All new blog posts from all authors)

    Popular (Most recent and liked blog posts)

    My Authors (Most recent from your Favorite Authors)

    Let's see if they make the change.
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    May 25, 2011 10:41 PM GMT
    this is getting to be a huge issue. Recently I read (it may have even been posted here) that amazon had implemented an algorithm that would list prices for books based on what you would most likely be willing to pay. So that book that costs 20$ could cost you 23$ if it's a type of book you buy often.
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    May 26, 2011 1:34 AM GMT
    You can always shop as a guest on Amazon.com...the personalization and recommendation services are all optional

    try searching for a flight on the European budget airlines...

    If you shop around, visit a couple of sites, search a few dates...you'll find your initial search jumps up in price when you back, go back delete the cookies, clear the history...it'll fall back down again
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    May 27, 2011 10:37 AM GMT
    MsclDrew saidYou can always shop as a guest on Amazon.com...the personalization and recommendation services are all optional

    try searching for a flight on the European budget airlines...

    If you shop around, visit a couple of sites, search a few dates...you'll find your initial search jumps up in price when you back
    , go back delete the cookies, clear the history...it'll fall back down again


    Holy cow! I believe this happened to me recently. I was searching for a flight on Orbitz to visit my buds down in Phoenix. I searched around, went to about 5 other search engines to compare prices. When I couldnt find anything close to the Orbitz price, I went back to Orbitz to purchase that cheaper flight ticket. Magically, the price on Orbitz jumped about 100 bucks within an hr!! I was so damn pissed and confused. The cheaper Orbitz ticket is now the same, if not more than the other sites. By that time I was just tired of all the searching so I went ahead with the inflated price.

    I didnt understand how the price could've jumped that much in such a short amount of time, with other variables still the same. I guess I just found the answer.
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    May 28, 2011 5:02 AM GMT
    Standing ovation for you OP. This is a great subject!
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    May 28, 2011 5:15 AM GMT
    I did create a separate thread about this with explanation... However, if you jump over to http://www.startpage.com/ you might find a very easy way to break the results filtering and use google autonomously.

    The funny thing is that we all self filter. There is a theory that we gravitate towards our own "kinds" in order to feel more comfortable and it would appear that google is just helping us. Basically, jocks will split off into a group. Then they will split into... oh, let's suppose gay and straight. After that they will self divide into conservative and liberal (even if it is just blocking those with opposing views.) In theory it will continue until you have a few gay conservative jocks who prefer knitting with blue yarn feeling only comfortable with "like minded" people. Hell if I will ever associate with somebody who CROCHETS with yellow and red yarn...