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Old 10-01-2019, 09:21   #76
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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The targeted or personalized search algorithms actually concern me a lot more than all the overt misinformation out there. This puts us back into the state of "unknown unknowns", but it does it by design. And it does it largely for the ugly purpose of selling us all more stuff.
I don't find the commercial motivation nearly as insidious as the much more subtle attempts to influence beliefs on major policy/political issues. The effort to sell you more stuff, after all, is patently obvious (I think) and so you still get to exercise your own free will. But now there's evidence that search engines such as Google are using algorithms to skew search results on hot-button policy issues they happen to favor, or simply deleting youTubes that express opinions they don't approve of. Some of this is entirely legitimate, of course, for obvious reasons. But I'm less concerned about what those positions might happen to be than I am with the fact that people I know nothing about -- and who are not subject to any oversight -- are trying to influence public opinion in a way that they happen to favor. It's a bit Orwellian, except that it's not big brother govt doing it but a private company with a monopoly.
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Old 10-01-2019, 09:29   #77
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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But now there's evidence that search engines such as Google are using algorithms to skew search results on hot-button policy issues they happen to favor, or simply deleting youTubes that express opinions they don't approve of.

Cite? Links?


The big web companies (eg Google, Facebook) have been catching it from all sides: accusations of political bias (presumably because of alleged editing/filtering), and accusations of enabling hate speech (when they don't edit/filter). The responsibilities of such massive companies have not yet been fully established in law; it's a landscape that's going to be shifting for a while yet.
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Old 10-01-2019, 09:44   #78
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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Cite? Links?


The big web companies (eg Google, Facebook) have been catching it from all sides: accusations of political bias (presumably because of alleged editing/filtering), and accusations of enabling hate speech (when they don't edit/filter). The responsibilities of such massive companies have not yet been fully established in law; it's a landscape that's going to be shifting for a while yet.
I tried Googling it but nothing came up.
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Old 10-01-2019, 09:54   #79
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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Cite? Links?


The big web companies (eg Google, Facebook) have been catching it from all sides: accusations of political bias (presumably because of alleged editing/filtering), and accusations of enabling hate speech (when they don't edit/filter). The responsibilities of such massive companies have not yet been fully established in law; it's a landscape that's going to be shifting for a while yet.
https://www.usnews.com/opinion/artic...t-be-regulated
Google is easy and we are happy frogs in warming water.
Will we even know when it boils?
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Old 10-01-2019, 10:41   #80
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

This* study found that that top Google search results were almost 40% more likely to contain pages with a ďLeftĒ or ďFar LeftĒ slant than they were pages from the right. Moreover, 16% of political keywords contained no right-leaning pages at all within the first page of results.

Our analysis of the algorithmic metrics underpinning those rankings suggests that factors within the Google algorithm itself may make it easier for sites with a left-leaning or centrist viewpoint to rank higher in Google search results compared to sites with a politically conservative viewpoint.

* ➥ Google liberal bias: study shows 40% of search results lean left | CanIRank

A search engine runs on algorithms and artificial intelligence to instantaneously sift through the Internetís nearly two billion Web sites. Googleís engineers have embedded something they call ďauthoritativenessĒ into their search algorithm to deliver its results, though what this is, exactly, is challenging to understand, because it appears to be based on a tautology: an authoritative source is a source that a lot of other sources consider to be authoritative.

When Representative Chabot searched Google for information about Republican tax cuts, for example, and the top results were all negative, it was not because Pichai or others at Google were opposed to tax cutsóitís because, in part, a lot of people were interested in reading critiques of the Republican plan.

More ➥ https://www.newyorker.com/tech/annal...bias-on-google
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Old 10-01-2019, 10:47   #81
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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https://www.usnews.com/opinion/artic...t-be-regulated
Google is easy and we are happy frogs in warming water.
Will we even know when it boils?
Thanks for that; it's fairly detailed. prolonging the derail cos I'm bored.... [edit, nah, I'll spare you. Here's just a few]

Because of its popularity (one could even say ubiquity) Google is very much a big honking mirror of its users... and of reality.

Look at complaint #1 (autocomplete and lyin ted vs crooked hillary) . First of all, one needs to show how often people are searching for either, and their usage in articles and text. Then you need to figure out how many possible legit uses of "crooked hill" are NOT related to Ms Clinton, and the frequency of people seeking those. The author hasn't, so it's hard to conclude overt bias based on that one example.

2 - governments don't like sharing sat pix of their installations. How is this Google bias? How would regulation change this?

3 - video banning. First, what the heck is a pro-choice song? Does anyone even know one? To debate this, you need to have a list of what was banned, and look at them. it's not enough to say that they were "conservative" or "liberal"; we also need to know if they were hate-mongering, or seriously offensive, or patently false, if anyone complained, etc etc.

5 - Blocking columnists/authors... yes concerning if true, but the Cringely example is nearly 9 years old. Anything more recent? And the Spain issue is obvious - if you are going to be billed or fined for aggregating Spanish stories... you stop doing that, right? Duh. Aggregation is an issue that still needs thrashing out, maybe.

8 - Search Engine Blacklist - this is a two-way street. There's an entire industry around gaming search engines (google - oops I mean search SEO). Google has banned companies caught overtly gaming the ratings; I have no problems there.

So, I don't think the author has made a convincing case for overt malfeasance, and to answer the question posed by the title:

Quote:
How did Google become the internet’s censor and master manipulator, blocking access to millions of websites?
They didn't, for the most part; they offered something for free that people love, they have a business model that 99.999% of users are comfortable with, and they are now being demanded to not only be the highway, but also the highway patrol. These are areas that will evolve; regulations will appear, models will change.

And finally, i don't think it convincingly proves that Google is aggressively pushing a political agenda or preferences.
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Old 10-01-2019, 10:49   #82
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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I don't find the commercial motivation nearly as insidious as the much more subtle attempts to influence beliefs on major policy/political issues. The effort to sell you more stuff, after all, is patently obvious (I think) and so you still get to exercise your own free will. But now there's evidence that search engines such as Google are using algorithms to skew search results on hot-button policy issues they happen to favor, or simply deleting youTubes that express opinions they don't approve of. Some of this is entirely legitimate, of course, for obvious reasons. But I'm less concerned about what those positions might happen to be than I am with the fact that people I know nothing about -- and who are not subject to any oversight -- are trying to influence public opinion in a way that they happen to favor. It's a bit Orwellian, except that it's not big brother govt doing it but a private company with a monopoly.
Evidence from behavioural economics suggests most of us are easily and predictably influenceable by commercial activities. Most of us report advertising has no influence on us, yet this is measurable untrue when put to the test.

Google is a private corporation. Itís driving purpose is to maximize profit. If this means influencing political dialogue it will do so. This is nothing new for big businesses, but the power that companies like Google have are far more concerning.

I am not aware of any credible evidence that suggests Google is driven by anything other than profit (the link provided is to a gripe piece). If this means silencing some voices, and magnifying others, then it will do so. But itís not ideological, itís financial. This doesnít make it less sinister, but itís a monster of our own creation, and our own support.

The good thing about corporations is that they will follow the money. If we all stopped using Google, it would change. If we blocked all their ads, stopped using their search tools, closed our G accounts, then they would get the message. But people are too easily seduced with ďfreeĒ stuff.
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Old 10-01-2019, 12:00   #83
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pirate Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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Originally Posted by Mike OReilly View Post
Evidence from behavioural economics suggests most of us are easily and predictably influenceable by commercial activities. Most of us report advertising has no influence on us, yet this is measurable untrue when put to the test.

Google is a private corporation. Itís driving purpose is to maximize profit. If this means influencing political dialogue it will do so. This is nothing new for big businesses, but the power that companies like Google have are far more concerning.

I am not aware of any credible evidence that suggests Google is driven by anything other than profit (the link provided is to a gripe piece). If this means silencing some voices, and magnifying others, then it will do so. But itís not ideological, itís financial. This doesnít make it less sinister, but itís a monster of our own creation, and our own support.

The good thing about corporations is that they will follow the money. If we all stopped using Google, it would change. If we blocked all their ads, stopped using their search tools, closed our G accounts, then they would get the message. But people are too easily seduced with ďfreeĒ stuff.
Kinda hard to do when your new Android Smart Phone comes pre loaded with everything Google has to offer, plus Facebook, Instagram et al which you cannot remove.
Its shades of Microsoft all over again.
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Old 10-01-2019, 12:43   #84
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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Originally Posted by Exile View Post
I don't find the commercial motivation nearly as insidious as the much more subtle attempts to influence beliefs on major policy/political issues ...

... But I'm less concerned about what those positions might happen to be than I am with the fact that people I know nothing about -- and who are not subject to any oversight -- are trying to influence public opinion in a way that they happen to favor ...
Blame "Old Farts", not Google/Facebook/U-Tube.

Who shared fake news on Facebook during the 2016 US presidential election?

People over 65 and ultra conservatives shared about seven times more fake information masquerading as news on the social media site than younger adults, moderates and super liberals during the 2016 election season, a new study* finds.

When other demographic factors and overall posting tendencies are factored in, the average person older than 65 shared seven times more false information than those between 18 and 29.
The seniors shared more than twice as many fake stories as people between 45 and 64 and more than three times that of people in the 30- to 44-year-old range.

People who called themselves very conservative shared the most false information, a bit more than those who identify themselves as conservative. The very conservatives shared misinformation 6.8 times more often than the very liberals and 6.7 times more than moderates. People who called themselves liberals essentially shared no fake stories

This does not necessarily mean that conservatives are by nature more gullible when it comes to false stories. It could simply reflect that there was much more pro-Trump and anti-Clinton false information in circulation in 2016 and it drove the numbers for sharing.

Spoiler Alert: Unsupported Opinion (or maybe, a question?) Follows - no citations provided. Oh, and I'm over 70 yo.

However, it may also be that conservatives post more false information because they tend to be more extreme, with less ideological variation than their liberal counterparts, and they take their lead from President Trump, who advocates, supports, shares and produces fake news/misinformation on a regular basis.

* The Study ➥ Less than you think: Prevalence and predictors of fake news dissemination on Facebook | Science Advances


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Old 10-01-2019, 13:47   #85
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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Kinda hard to do when your new Android Smart Phone comes pre loaded with everything Google has to offer, plus Facebook, Instagram et al which you cannot remove.
Its shades of Microsoft all over again.
Yes, itís all part of the seduction. Apple does it too. Itís hard to not be wrapped up in this problem. The only solution is to stop using all these tools ó but they make it virtually impossible to do this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
Blame "Old Farts", not Google/Facebook/U-Tube.

Who shared fake news on Facebook during the 2016 US presidential election?

People over 65 and ultra conservatives shared about seven times more fake information masquerading as news on the social media site than younger adults, moderates and super liberals during the 2016 election season, a new study* finds.

When other demographic factors and overall posting tendencies are factored in, the average person older than 65 shared seven times more false information than those between 18 and 29.
The seniors shared more than twice as many fake stories as people between 45 and 64 and more than three times that of people in the 30- to 44-year-old range.
Interesting Gord. Iíll go read the link. But off the cuff, I wonder if this finding is really just the natural conjunction of older people tending to be more conservative, AND less tech savvy.

Does the study break out the rate young ultra conservatives shared fake news?
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Old 10-01-2019, 15:58   #86
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

Being King of the World seems quite simple to me. (though I know I might be wrong)...

1. Start a company with the benevolent business model of giving away the world's most popular everything. Declare the slogan "don't be evil" as a code of conduct.
2. Create the best free search engine ever, so that almost everyone uses it because it makes their lives easier...which records who-searches-for-what to my company database, for their convenience.
3. Create a free email system so nice that a billion+ people use it, that records what people write and to whom, to my company database for their convenience.
4. Create an electronic "assistant" that millions use which records everything they say to my company database for their convenience.
5. Create many apps and even a cheap smart phone that records where people are and where they have been to my company database for their convenience.
6. Wake up one day and realize that if I know everything about everyone, then I can do much more than sell people stuff. I can also influence opinions and individual actions and government actions and... eventually everyone will happily accept that I am indeed the King of the World.
7. Remove my company's slogan "don't be evil" from code of conduct.

Just because your're paranoid doesn't mean they aren't after you.
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Old 10-01-2019, 16:12   #87
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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Yes, itís all part of the seduction. Apple does it too. Itís hard to not be wrapped up in this problem. The only solution is to stop using all these tools ó but they make it virtually impossible to do this.
It is possible (but not simple) to buy legit "rooted" Android phones that you can install as little or as much as you want on them.
There are also ways to not be transmitting your data 24/7: don't stay logged into Google or Facebook all the time on your phone. Again, not so simple.

Quote:
Interesting Gord. Iíll go read the link. But off the cuff, I wonder if this finding is really just the natural conjunction of older people tending to be more conservative, AND less tech savvy.

I'm older, and I work in tech. 0 for 2, baby
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Old 10-01-2019, 16:25   #88
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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Originally Posted by cyan View Post
Being King of the World seems quite simple to me. (though I know I might be wrong)...

1. Start a company with the benevolent business model of giving away the world's most popular everything. Declare the slogan "don't be evil" as a code of conduct.
2. Create the best free search engine ever, so that almost everyone uses it because it makes their lives easier...which records who-searches-for-what to my company database, for their convenience.
3. Create a free email system so nice that a billion+ people use it, that records what people write and to whom, to my company database for their convenience.
4. Create an electronic "assistant" that millions use which records everything they say to my company database for their convenience.
5. Create many apps and even a cheap smart phone that records where people are and where they have been to my company database for their convenience.
6. Wake up one day and realize that if I know everything about everyone, then I can do much more than sell people stuff. I can also influence opinions and individual actions and government actions and... eventually everyone will happily accept that I am indeed the King of the World.
7. Remove my company's slogan "don't be evil" from code of conduct.

Just because your're paranoid doesn't mean they aren't after you.
Frogs in warm water, I tell you.

2,4,5 - The tools developed by Google, together with a "friendly" aggregator (Facebook) and e-commerce (ebay, Amazon), are cornerstones of the public Internet. They were going to come from somewhere... and having government lead and fund that... that's socializm, innit? Plus it would have taken forever


3 - I can remember when gmail was invitation only, and people would pester the lucky few for invites. Also, Hotmail came before. But it's not the only way to get email. I have had my own domains and private email service since Al Gore invented the Internet... it can be had for a few bucks a month. I kind of hate gmail's layout and display anyway.


6 - I don't for 0.1 sec think that Google wants to rule anything; I suspect they're just happy to be profitable, and they wish that the hassles with being humungous would just go away.
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Old 10-01-2019, 16:54   #89
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pirate Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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It is possible (but not simple) to buy legit "rooted" Android phones that you can install as little or as much as you want on them.
There are also ways to not be transmitting your data 24/7: don't stay logged into Google or Facebook all the time on your phone. Again, not so simple.
Thanks for that.. did not know this was possible.. researching the "How to Root my Android" now on my other tab..
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Old 10-01-2019, 17:01   #90
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Re: Intellectual Humility & the importance of knowing you might be wrong

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2,4,5 - The tools developed by Google, together with a "friendly" aggregator (Facebook) and e-commerce (ebay, Amazon), are cornerstones of the public Internet. They were going to come from somewhere... and having government lead and fund that... that's socializm, innit? Plus it would have taken forever
Well you did scare me away with the s-word there, but lordy I never claimed the "government" would have been a better driving force. Alas, you seem to have glossed over the really helpful data collection part. It's cool, most people accept this and move on as well. That's kind of my main point, though.
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3 - I can remember when gmail was invitation only, and people would pester the lucky few for invites. Also, Hotmail came before. But it's not the only way to get email. I have had my own domains and private email service since Al Gore invented the Internet... it can be had for a few bucks a month. I kind of hate gmail's layout and display anyway.
Well then you're not among THAT billion people. Well done.
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6 - I don't for 0.1 sec think that Google wants to rule anything; I suspect they're just happy to be profitable, and they wish that the hassles with being humungous would just go away.
I suspect that they did not START with anything but profits in mind. However, if one day you just happened to possess THE ultimate power: owning more information than the NSA ever did about what most in the modern world say, think, and do with an unprecedented ability to influence those people, with the silent approval of those same people ... would you simply keep selling them stuff? Perhaps the answer merits more than 100 milliseconds of imagination.

PS All items in my 7-step world domination recipe have been done by google except for #6 which was simply a colorful premise.
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