stopping propaganda and “alternative facts” is a trivial technical and business exercise. that tech companies act like it’s not is ridiculous and damaging to democracy.

A) do not sell ads

B) do not normalize design/user interface

Image for post
Image for post

Sounds like we wouldn’t have tech businesses if you did that right?

Wrong. There are thousands of tech businesses that make money without ads and don’t force you to create and consume in the same way as everyone else.

Ok well we wouldn’t have these amazing platforms like google or Facebook?

Wrong. We had community spaces and information retrieval systems, you know, libraries, long before these platforms. If libraries had a ratio of 30 alternative facts to 1 fact, like these platforms, they’d never had stood the test of time.

Advertising is terrible for society and we should attempt to limit it as much as possible particularly in the conversational and education commons.

User interfaces that limit expression and consumption to a list of one image, one caption and some hidden links is bad for human perception and empathy. Think about how normalized your behavior has become.

Long term this won’t last. And in that regard many of these businesses will be viewed as little experiments of network science.

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