Skip to main content

How nice people get corrupted in Facebook?

Mark Zuckerburg said that Facebook doesn’t have a fake news problem and, that even if it did, fake news didn’t influence the outcome of this year’s presidential election. I respectfully disagree with him. Here is why.
We gather tidbits and knowledge about everyday life through social interactions with other people. This behavior is a nod to the human condition and need to talk with others as a means of making sense of our world and our place within it. In short, people don’t construct reality by themselves.
So where do people go to have these conversations? For the most parts, these conversations happen on social media. Americans spend an alarming amount of time checking social media on their phones. People in the U.S. check their Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts a 17 times a day. That means that at least once every hour that a person is awake, they’re scanning their newsfeeds and interacting with others on social media. As a result, people learn a lot (whether consciously or subconsciously) from shared articles, images, and trending news that appear on their social feeds.
That being said, if people are exposed to more fake news stories than real ones, they are more apt to be influenced by the fake stories because that’s what is “trending.” That is the power of conformity. People will change their behavior and beliefs just to align with others. 
We just have to look at the Asch Conformity Experiment as evidence of how willingly individuals conform to popular opinion. The results of the study demonstrates that people are more inclined to go along with a majority opinion even though they don't agree with it. People do this simply to avoid being ridiculed or considered "peculiar." Think of it as choosing the path of least resistance.

According to BuzzFeed, during the last three months of the presidential campaign, the 20 top fake news stories on Facebook generated more engagements — shares, likes, and comments — than the 20 top stories from real news websites. 
In summary, Facebook can be a force for good or evil. Facebook has the power to change governments, as seen in Egypt, Tunisia, and Ukraine. But it can also threaten democratic institutions. As a society, we continuously communicate with one another on social media in order to stay aware of moments in culture and everyday life. But, if the news that we see and share is fake, so to is our conversations. In turn, our social reality becomes a mirage of truth and a center for fake truths. Google and Facebook have a plan, however, to keep this from happening in the future. And for that tenacious plan, I applaud them. 


Popular posts from this blog

How Cool Brands Stay Hot: Aim for Love, Not Likes

Love is an unconditional emotion while like is a more watered-down version of love. Loving someone means that he or she means everything to you while liking someone implies that you are only happy being with that person. Love involves deeper, stronger emotions, while like is more of a tender feeling towards that special someone. In a world of infinite choices, love is everything. Like is a nice to have.  Today, we live in a world of abundance, where people intent to create content surpass their time to consume it. Video content is much easier and cheaper to produce than at any other time in history. YouTube sees 400 hours of video uploaded every minute. Facebook has more than 250,000 status updates in the same span. We could never read and see everything online.  With unlimited possibilities and limited time, we pay sustainable attention to what we love and divided attention to what we like. We spend hours watching Homeland and give our divided attention to our news feed on Facebook. …

Persuasive Simplicity, Persuasive Commerce

In a complex world, simplicity wins. In a human world, purpose sets us apart. In a complex and human world, we need persuasive simplicity to survive. Persuasive simplicity is putting simplicity in the path of motivation. It is simplicity with purpose. The Perfect Machine Today we are entrenched in a performance-marketing race. We want to make commerce as efficient as possible. We want to build the perfect commerce machine—one that knows what we like, hate, love, and need. A precise machine that doesn't spoil us with too many choices.  A nimble machine that delivers goods in hours, not days or weeks. A frictionless machine where we can order in one click, one button, one voice order, anytime, anywhere. A cost-effective machine that guarantees the best price. This machine sounds a lot like,,, and The Human World

Winter and Summer in Adland

It is winter in Adland.  We have moved from a world of scarcity to a world of abundance and algorithms.  We have lost the power of influence. Trust has been severely damaged.  Consumer attention is the new bottleneck. We no longer decide who sees us. Instead, we get picked.  30 second is not enough anymore. We need to take consumers through a scenic journey to create a long lasting relationship.  Everyone is a publisher. It is easier than ever to create, but harder than ever to make a hit.  The impulse to make has far outrun the desire to consume.  New forces have emerged in the form of sophisticated algorithms.  A new model has surfaced called "pay per play,” which scored everything we do on relevance to feeding the machine. It decides what gets picked, when, and where, based on extreme relevancy.  Mass media has vanished. Precision and personalization have emerged.  It is winter in Adland. The good days are all long gone.  It is Summer in Adland We now have the power to make bra…