Thought Of The Week

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GM Thought of the Week

Social Media is broken: this is not Fake News!

“I thought once everybody could speak freely and exchange information and ideas, the world is automatically going to be a better place. I was wrong about that.” These are the words of Evan Williams – inventor of Blogger and founder/investor in Twitter who raises an interesting point.

Facebook live is being used to broadcast crimes in real time, Twitter is commonly used for trolling and bullying and fake news is on the rise across a plethora of social media channels. It brings social media to the fore and begs the question that for all it’s good points, bringing people closer together to name but one, is it flawed beyond repair?

The digital online behemoths of Facebook and Google would argue differently and have taken somewhat traditional steps of hiring gatekeepers by the hundred to monitor the likes of Facebook Live – but will this be enough?

In my opinion it is a matter of time until the technology catches up with the issues at hand and more sophisticated algorithms will surface to combat the likes of fake news and cyber-bullying and limit the amount that is taking place. However, to quote Williams again, “the internet is not a silver bullet. It’s a tool that reflects us. It’s just as good or as bad as we are.” These issues will never fully disappear as social media allows a platform for them to exist – it’s up to both media owners and consumers to ensure that there’s a good news story to tell in the fight to fix social media.

Daniel Chrystie, Associate Director AV