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October 14th, 2019

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The conventional wisdom among social media companies is that you can’t put too much of the onus on users to personalize their own feeds

(written by lawrence krubner, however indented passages are often quotes). You can contact lawrence at: lawrence@krubner.com, or follow me on Twitter.

Self-serving, since they need the algorithms to target advertisements. But also interesting to think that people might sometimes want some kind filter. People pick their friends on LiveJournal, why hasn’t LiveJournal swept the world? Is it the algorithm that made Facebook a juggernaught? People seem to want control over what they see, is there a middle ground, away from algorithms designed to maximize engagement, but offering enough filters to protect people from the most boring material? How much novelty do people want?

The conventional wisdom among social media companies is that you can’t put too much of the onus on users to personalize their own feeds. Facebook ascended to near-global dominance by building a News Feed algorithm that knows better than users themselves what they’re likely to click on. Instagram and Twitter resisted algorithmic feeds for years, but both eventually embraced automation and saw both their user base and financial fortunes rise. Every action you take further refines the engagement optimization machine, and giving users access to its levers would only gum up the works.

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1 COMMENT

October 17, 2019
4:50 pm

By Anderson Nascimento Nunes

Can’t speak for anyone else, but on my feed reader: 5K bookmarked feeds, 50K regex on the killfile to filter out the trash. Enough? Nope, not yet. Need more, more, more.

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