Filter Bubbles & the Future of the Internet

The subject of our class period yesterday for Writing for Digital Media was the following TED Talk on “filter bubbles” by Eli Pariser:

One of our assignments was to comment on our professor’s, Barbara Nixon, blog regarding our reactions to the video. Here’s the comment I left:

“Filter bubbles seem to be present on many sites. I think they’re dangerous because they really limit the search results, advertisements, etc. that are we exposed to on a day-to-day basis. They may bias our opinion of a specific topic and hinder us from exploring all aspects of a subject. I think filter bubbles go against the original purpose of the internet and search engines.”

Image Credit: “Flickr Dreamworlds” by JD Hancock

Let’s go a little more in depth regarding filter bubbles. The number of sites that are currently utilizing filter bubbles is appalling and furthermore, the types of sites are surprising. I think the biggest turn-off is that they are in place without consulting internet users. Users are blind to the fact that their Facebook, Google, Yahoo! News, etc. experiences are different from those of the people around them. Some may classify it as an invasion of privacy.

The biggest problem I see is that filter bubbles limit the amounts and types of information internet users are exposed to. One of the main goals of the creation of the Web was to bring people together and provide them with a shared experience involving the relay of information. Have filter bubbles caused the purpose of the internet to be altered? The information users come in contact with has definitely changed. How much longer will this go on before users start solely using sites that don’t employ filter bubbles or will by that time every website have put into use some type of filter? Filter bubbles will have a lasting effect on the educational process and the content educators are teaching.

What’s your opinion on filter bubbles? How have you seen them at work in your internet experiences? How do you think they will affect the future of the internet?

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1 Comment

Filed under Southeastern University Coursework

One response to “Filter Bubbles & the Future of the Internet

  1. What a good post! And I think filter bubbles could eventually personalize the internet. Good picture!

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