Social Media: What you see is what was paid for.

Post Reply
Site Admin
Posts: 91
Joined: Fri Aug 18, 2017 9:03 pm

Social Media: What you see is what was paid for.

Post by circuitbored » Mon Aug 26, 2019 6:21 pm

A lot of people are seeing low counts and low "likes" on their post views lately and I think its signaling that the free meal is over...

By this, I'm referring to the ideal that Social Media as a "free and fair" service is dying. It's not happening obviously, it's a veiled attempt of Social Media companies like Twitter, Reddit, and yes even Facebook owned properties like Instagram to turn their companies into even larger profit-generating entities now that they've hooked their users into the ideal that they run "free services".

"Free Services" is listed in quotes here because technically the sites are free to enroll in. The idea that you can link with your friends and post whatever you want is free. The things that most people don't understand are that when they create a profile, that information can be used to track them for a variety of purposes and that it's not transparent at all, and the information can't be purged, possibly ever.

Another caveat about social media that is not so transparent to users is that you're not getting likes and views because most of your friends never see your posts... Ever... It's your fault for not being interesting enough perhaps because you didn't pay to "boost" them. "Boosting" is a fairly covert practice which most Social Media providers now allow most users on their platform to do.... Now posters can pay small or even large sums of money to get their posts prioritized over other (lesser paying and free) posts, and it's catching on like wild fire among individuals as well as companies all across social media. This means that when you join a site, your posts are NOT shared equally among your friends, and their posts are not visible by you like they once were. It used to all be relatively fair until this practice crept in. Before boosting all we had to compete with we're obviously marked commercial ads. Boosting is also a practice heavily utilized by "fake news" media to normalize generated stories and propaganda, which these days ends up affecting public opinion.

Now content doesn't rule, simply cash does. The majority of what you see is influenced by who PAID FOR IT, and as a result you're watching commercials from most of the people you follow, rather than real posts. And worse yet, it's not just CocaCola and WalMart competing for your attention with this payola... It's the kid down the street rapping in his parent's basement that can buy ad space on your timeline, and be prioritized over your best friend's posts simply because they paid money. We're not very far from signing up to Facebook just to view ONLY commercials before seeing what our grandparents are up to.

I'm thoroughly convinced that this is why Social Media sites gradually moved away from maintaining chronological timelines a while back, and why Instagram wants to remove "likes" all together... We as posters used to be able to see analytics on our posts, and get feedback from our followers, but now it could potentially expose that we aren't being viewed by anyone like they promised originally, so it's better to just "hide all the evidence" I guess, and lie to us that this model is still useful to us as individuals. The situation is great if I'm wealthy and able to boost posts whenever I want, but it's also a slippery slope, guaranteed to get more expensive and to suit large companies over time, while killing the "equal publication platform" that the Internet was founded upon.

Another downside of these sites being driven by shareholders is that they begin to shun innovation of new features that make the sites productive and useful to you... Because improving the services that Social Media sites like Twitter and Reddit will only generate new users, which they don't need as much as more desired/prioritized revenue to please investors.

I can list numerous ways in which Social Media is becoming worse, and I'm sure you can too. But they are indeed "free"*** services, so remember, the only power you have to encourage them to stay honest and fair is to totally resign from them... So choose carefully, it's quite labor intensive to build a new profile from scratch.

*** = Free does not necessarily mean free in any shape or form, and may cause loss of your money and/or time.

Post Reply