Why I Don’t Trust Facebook Important Updates

In my previous post I mentioned Facebook’s Important Updates option to only receive important updates from users you follow/subscribe to in your News Feed. I also mentioned my problem with important updates. You see Facebook determines important updates to be what are personally relevant to you but what if they make a mistake? What if they become so confident they know me better than I know myself and filter something I might find interesting? Even if they do know me well enough and do deliver personally relevant information to me if they only deliver pleasing information to me that doesn’t challenge or broaden my world view how does that benefit me as a citizen? As citizens we feel a responsibility to know more about the world even about things we’re not personally interested in. If we’re caught in a filter we might not get exposed to certain news and information we need to know about.

That’s why having read Eli Pariser’s book “The Filter Bubble” which I’ve blogged about before I too worry about the effect of filter bubbles on our democracy and our media. If the threat of big telecommunications and cable companies distorting Network Neutrality so they can takeover control of the Internet and discriminate online the threat of the filter bubble makes things worse. We don’t need corporate gatekeepers to our media online. We need to maintain the free and open Internet and have a neutral, unpersonalized global Internet universally available. That is why I don’t like some of the new changes in Facebook that make it harder to avoid their filters.

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