Tuesday, October 5, 2021

The Only Way to Win Is Not to Play

I've never had an account with Facebook, the social media titan which made the news yesterday for a mass outage which also took down its affiliates Instagram and WhatsApp.  Years ago, when I was formulating the Big Bad Bastard (the Bald came a bit later), I worked as a private investigator, mainly investigating suspicious auto accident claims.  Even back then, I was appalled at the amount of information that was available about people online, mainly through subscription research services.  When social media came along, all I could think was, "We used to have to hunt down information that people are now willingly putting online for public consumption."  Got a workers' compensation claim?  Well, what is this picture of you doing kegstands at a party all about?  Also, I really didn't need to know that a guy I worked with one summer years ago hates Jews.  Yeah, no Facebook for me!

That being said, social media platforms have their use, particularly in communities in which phone service or other internet platforms may be lacking.  Facebook's ubiquity was not a foregone conclusion, the user base is largely to blame for its primacy:

The real problem with Facebook is that the platform is a pernicious vector of disinformation and radicalization, a veritable pipeline of propaganda and hate speech.  Thankfully, Progressives in Congress are discussing breaking up the monolith, which had gobbled up the pre-existing Instagram and WhatsApp.  Personally, my take on Facebook is that its users allowed the company to get overly large, and evil.  There are alternatives to Facebook for those ready to break Zuckerberg's yoke... I mean, Myspace never went away.


Richard said...

I used to use it. It was a way to talk with my old roommate, or my friend from work.

People i care about.
Now, i don't do that anymore.

It's not working. I don't like being Facebook person.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

It's just too damn toxic.