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The threats of social networks

facebook disinformation open source

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#1 OFFLINE   sunrat

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Posted 11 June 2019 - 07:37 PM

Facebook, Not Microsoft, Is the Main Threat to Open Source

Facebook scares the h3ll out of me. The title of this article is only part of what it discusses. The more frightening part is how FB enables influencing the whole fabric of society with disinformation, and now they are proposing more privacy through encryption which not only makes it easier for bad actors to communicate but abrogates FB's responsibility of governing evil content on the platform (such as terrorist groups) as FB themselves won't be able to access it.
Be sure to read that article's comments as they are pertinent and insightful, particularly Doc Searls' one.

A prime example of the threat is how Avaaz mounted a massive campaign to take down thousands of "fake news" FB groups who were attempting to influence the recent EU elections similar to what happened in the last US elections.

This article at Avaaz is essential reading:
We did it - Europe resists!

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We’ve never been more proud of our movement.

After Trump, Brexit, and Bolsonaro, Europe was supposed to be next in last weekend’s elections. The last reliably democratic global power, drowned in the fake news and hate of the far right.

To meet this historic threat, Avaaz exposed and forced the takedown of likely the largest disinformation networks EVER. Networks that were racking up 3 BILLION views a year of their poison in just six countries. Enough to reach every voter an average of twenty times!!

And because hateful extremists also count on low voter turnout, we launched inspirational calls to defend democracy and go vote that were seen over 100 million times across Europe just in the last few days before the election!

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#2 OFFLINE   V.T. Eric Layton

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Posted 12 June 2019 - 11:38 AM

> ...how FB enables influencing the whole fabric of society with disinformation...

Stone tablets, papyrus scrolls, paper pamphlets, newspapers, magazines, etc... all these things at certain times in history were used toward the spreading or mis or dis information and propaganda. If we're going to blame any one for this, we can blame Gutenberg, and more recently, Tim Berners-Lee.

The difference with FB is that it's being used by many factions to spread this hate and discontent. So, the many are using a much more efficient means of distribution to the masses. Ain't the Internet and technology wonderful. On the other hand, though, this same efficient mass distribution methods can also be used be folks spreading the TRUTH!

It's shaping up to be a nice cyber-war, it seems. What the majority of nice folks need to do, is learn to discriminate against the feces out there. They need to develop much more refined filtering mechanisms in their own heads. It's always been like this, though. The suckers will get suckered. The more discriminating, less naive folks won't. Sadly, these days, I believe that former group is the majority.

The ultimate solution to this problem is to just turn your computer or smarty-pants phone off. Walk away. Go outside and watch the birds and squirrels playing in the trees. Enjoy your day.

Signed:

The Proud Luddite

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#3 OFFLINE   raymac46

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Posted 13 June 2019 - 11:07 AM

Not to give FB a pass on this, but all technology can be seen as evil or good depending on how it's used.
Fritz Haber developed nitrogen fixation in the early 1900s, so that we could get unlimited supply of nitrates and ammonia. The Germans used his work to make all their munitions in World War 1; without it they would have run out of TNT long before the war ended. Haber's discovery led to the German defeat, rise of Hitler, and Haber's own exile from Germany and death in 1934. Not pretty.
At the same time the Haber process freed humanity from hunger as nitrogen fixation is essential for the growth of crops worldwide.
So what is it - good or bad? It depends.
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