Wonky's Land of Nonsensical Musings

Why corporate controlled social media is teh debil

Oh blogging I love you so.  Not really my own blogging attempts because those have been sporadic and unsatisfying.  I love blogging because in my mind it is one of the only true social medias.  Early entrants into the category of true social media are chat channels, mostly thinking of irc here, and message boards.
This is a post I’ve actually started many times.  I have had trouble putting it into words. To be blunt I hate corporate controlled “social media”. In the past whenever someone would mention Facebook my standard comment was “Facebook is teh debil”.  Hey I was chatting in irc.  Twitter started off nicely but has recently taken a wrong turn.

So what is real social media.  It can be directly related to the old irc and message board concept.  It’s the internet version of a group of people with a common interest getting together.  Imagine having some people over to you house for a get together.  You talk about your life, share pictures of the kids, get everyone caught up on what is going on your life.  Maybe you sit around the tv and watch a show. There is inherently no difference between that and what is happening on facebook or in the comment section of a blog.
So along comes a man. Let us call  him Mack Zinkerburg. So Mr. Zinkerburg builds his own living room.  It rather poorly built and kinda confusing, but he invites everybody over to carry on their conversations.  For reasons inexplicable to me, loads of people stop by.  No Mr. Zinkerburg has not done this out of the goodness of his heart. He wants money. As much money as he can possibly get and he isn’t to scrupulous about how he gets it.

So in this poorly living room he has placed a billion microphones and cameras to capture every piece of information about you he can.  He learns every single thing he can about you and all your friends.  He then sells that information to someone how then uses that information to try and sell you things. Oh but Mach doesn’t stop there.  He lets some people pay him money so they can force their way into your conversation.  There you are discussing the latest episode of The Walking Dead and up pops some random stranger trying to sell their walking dead fan fiction.  They get to do this because they’ve paid Mack a shiny dollar per person they wish to interrupt.

Surely Mack is done being greedy and controlling.  Nope there is more. He decides you don’t really need to hear all that your friends are saying.  He starts filtering out your communication.  Only half of what you are saying is getting to your friends.

To be serious as a wrap up.  I find for profit social media to be offensive and completely unnecessary. I find it offensive because fundamentally I don’t see them as having the right to profit off of information about me. I’ve long thought that personal information(phone number, online searches, etc) should be considered the property of that person. For every dollar google makes of the info they have about me I should get 95 cents.  Secondly it is unnecessary.  The internet is filled with open free alternatives that foster communication and community without the profit motive or incursions into private information. At its best the internet fosters openness and sharing. It contains the promise to be the democratizer of information and culture, but greed is turning it into a series of the closed gardens were people spend all day trying to figure out how to shove the maximum amount of adds in your face. I guess you can say I am a kinda techno hippie.


  1. Liene

    My question is do the ads really amke money? I ignore mine completely, don't know anyone who actually clicks through, unless it is accidentally (which with the small buttons on smartphones might be more often than I think). And also, I've just heard that the current "in" young generation thinks fbook is out. Whatsapp and a bunch of newbiws are supposedly more in? Finally, on twitter – I have a twitter account and I'm my only follower. Why? Because I like to enter contests, and so I tweet my commercial twieets into nothingness and win free books. Is that wong?

  2. Wonky73

    In something like 2003 I predicted the collapse of the online advertising market. And yet there it still is worth billions. I have no idea where the money is coming from. I understand facebook making money on games at stuff.. there you are actually buying something.

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