TED Conversations

David Wees

Mathematics Teacher, Stratford Hall

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Is the current direction of the web Democratic?

While I agree with Roger that his vision of the future of the web is where we are headed, I would like to argue that it is wholly unDemocratic. The control panel version of the Internet is disturbing, because it seems to me that we have become willing to sacrifice the ability to control what we view and interact with for the convenience of other people making that decision for us.

Facebook and Google's algorithms to filter what we view based on our preferences means that, through the algorithms they have written, corporations have more control over the information we receive than ever before. The definition of fascist corporatism (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corporatism#Fascist_corporatism) is "management of sectors of the economy by government or private organizations." In an information technology age, management of information is management of the economy, and we are letting private corporations manage entirely too much of our information.

We know where the road of fascism leads us. We need to take a step back from that road and find a new path.


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  • Nov 13 2011: Now, get your facts straight. Are you saying that Google is biasing it's results based on bribes from companies, or alters its results to fit its needs??! God, don't believe everything what you hear from that guy in the video. One of the main things that made Google such a big hit is that their search went through a clean and good algorithm that was completely unbiased and untampered with.
    Oh, and please, never bring Google and Facebook into the same sentence again. They are both companies with a completely different aim, method, and policy.
    Another thing about the Democracy part: The internet *never was* democratic. Yes, as you pointed out somewhere, there have been democratic elections and things like that, but what you have to realize is that that is a very different topic. In this case it is that the internet is being used as a medium to create democracy in the world. But the rest of the internet here was mostly just free reign, with a few international laws and everything.
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      Nov 13 2011: Who said anything about bribes? I think you are putting words in my mouth.

      Have you actually tested your Google results and your friends Google results, and the difference between when you are logged in, or not logged in?

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