Oct 5, 2017

Professor Steven Weber on New Political Pressures on Social Media

From The Mercury News

Technology’s dark side: Pressure mounts on Facebook, Twitter, Google

By Queenie Wong

Facebook wants to bring the world closer together. Twitter vows to protect freedom of expression. And as Google tries to make information universally accessible, the company urges its employees not to be evil.

Now, these companies are facing a wake-up call after the U.S. presidential election highlighted how social media, ads and search results can distort facts, promote fake news or reinforce biases....

“It’s not just social media, but the whole internet platform business has shifted in the last six months from good until proven otherwise to bad until proven otherwise. It’s stunning,” said Steven Weber, a professor at UC Berkeley’s School of Information and Department of Political Science....

“We live in a time when nothing is apolitical,” Weber said. “Particularly for large firms to try to strike a position that they’re somehow above politics or completely impartial is disingenuous, but more importantly, no one believes it.”...

Read more...

Last updated:

October 5, 2017