Thursday, 29 September 2011

'We're Off to See the Wizard'

Remember in the Wizard of Oz when Toto pulls away the curtain to reveal the salesman who was pretending he was the Great and Powerful Wizard of Oz? This TED video on Bubble Filters takes a look at the man behind the curtain on sites like Facebook and Google that is really a set of algorithms. These sites are using tools to narrow down your web experience so that it's more about you. They do this by collecting data about your online behaviour and manipulating your experience on the web to 'suit you'. The video shows there is a lot hidden filtering going on that is the antithesis of the great democratic experiment that we thought the web exemplified. So is the wizard a wizard who can serve or is he bluffing us all?

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