Tuesday, August 30, 2016

It's a Big World Out There

During the war in Gaza, my Facebook feed was clogged. Yes, I know the world media sucks and they are being totally unfair. I agree with you. Preaching to the choir and all that. That being the case, must you people keep sharing the obvious with me?  Go tell someone who, maybe, needs to told?

The way Facebook is set up, Frank Bruni reminds us ("How Facebook Warps Our Worlds"), is that it keeps tabs of what you like and then suggests other things you might like. 

Sounds harmless . . .  in theory. 

By constantly providing us only the information that appeals, our view is narrowed. It's like shopping for dresses whilst being adamant on only one label. There are many dresses out there. Many many many pretty, flattering frocks that differ from one another, but can still potentially suit. If not you, then someone else.

Come to think of it, my FB feed is rather monotonous. How many times can Sean Bean as Boromir be used in a meme? A million freakin' times.
Maybe that's why I love the op-ed sections of the newspaper. I can read about all sorts of topics I didn't know existed. I can agree, disagree, or snort in derision. But along the way, I am reminded of this vast, diverse, fascinating world beyond Jean-Luc Picard face palm witticisms.

1 comment:

Daniel Saunders said...

Reading the newspaper doesn't always help either, given that most people buy a paper that fits their political views. I've heard it said that one should read several papers or at least buy a paper that one does not agree with. I actually used to do that, but my views shifted towards those of the paper I read, albeit not completely or on all issues. Nowadays, for lack of time and money, I read BBC news online (which is supposed to be unbiased but has a left-wing bias at least on some topics) and The Economist, which is right-wing enough to balance the BBC a bit, I suppose.

When I used to blog regularly about all kinds of subjects, I did debate Israel on my blog with (gasp!) non-Jews. It was an interesting and not always pleasant experience, but very different to the echo chamber of internal Jewish debate.