Social Dilemma - The Movie and the Case for Greater Transparency for Social Media Platform Businesses
The recently released film, Social Dilemma investigates how social media platforms work and the effects they are having in further polarizing humanity. In the film, we hear from the creators of big tech, many of whom express tremendous regret of what they have unleashed. Facebook and Twitter are no substitute for the public square, an exchange of ideas. Rather these algorithm-driven anonymous platforms with a business goal of keeping individuals on their systems longer, have mechanisms for further isolating us from each other and communing only with those who agree.
Because algorithms operate out of view and much of technology is a “black box” to both consumers and legislators, the platforms have enjoyed the benefits of self-regulation since their inception. We are coming out of the most polarized election in history, in the midst of a pandemic, and people are spending more time online. Becoming further immersed in the personalized algorithm-fed content. Self-regulation isn’t working.
We are soon to start a new season in Congress. Some of our newly elected representatives have an understanding of big tech that they can bring to DC. As an activist community, we seek to engage our representatives in meaningful, productive discussion and idea-generation. This is the path to identifying solutions to what now feels so intractable.
If you haven't watched the film, please watch it and share it. The trailer is below. The full film is available on Netflix. Watching this is how we gain a common understanding and get the conversation going.