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Escaping your echo chambers
plok
Brisbane, Queensland
540 posts
[mods delete this post if deemed verboten]

Does anyone else find it hard to escape their echo chambers? By escape I mean more than the ability to simply read stuff from "the other side" on whatever topic in question is. I mean engage, comment, respond with people who hold a different position than you.

In my experience, when belonging to let's say the "dominant side" (I say side again as a nod to the extreme polarization of seemingly every topic) that dissenting views are not tolerated explicitly. Censored/deleted either by mods/empowered authority or by versions of community ranking/rating schemes.

People on the "dissenting side" having been silenced in "dominant" managed spaces congregate in areas that "dominant" proponents by and large won't visit.

My feeling is that over time this pattern has become more and more extreme. People no longer try to understand the points of views of others and find their points of disagreement. People seem less and less inclined to accept that others may come to a different decision or judgement on a particular topic and that that is not an indication that one or the other is "wrong".

Discussion and exchange can help people understand why they hold different or even opposing views on something. Not by focusing on advocacy or from a position of persuasion. Instead, by trying to find the typically multiple underlying and orthogonal principles that comprise any topic of real world complexity. Discovering the different weightings/moral judgements/opinions people hold in regard of these.

Twenty years ago, places like these forums I felt offered promise for a template of how to enable those direct interactions among the wider community, at a time when the flow of ideas was very uni-directional.

I don't know what the solution is, but my fear is that the online echo chambers we fall into are starting to degrade the fabric of society. They are undermining the basic level of respect in each others individual agency and I'm fearful of where this path leads.
11:22am 16/02/22 Permalink
system
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11:22am 16/02/22 Permalink
Spook
Brisbane, Queensland
41591 posts
socials obviously feed you more of what you show interest in.

even so, i still see plenty of nutbagg anti vaxers in my socials, which makes me a little sad.
11:54am 16/02/22 Permalink
dazedandconfused
Sydney, New South Wales
941 posts
The Overton window moves in one direction. That's about all there is to say about that. History repeats because human psychology is flawed.
10:10am 17/02/22 Permalink
Hogfather
Cairns, Queensland
17208 posts
Our minds in lots of ways aren't really fit for purpose in 2022. Given our handicaps its amazing that at species-level we get anything done.

We're literally a few hundred million tribes constantly snarling at each other, while also almost incidentally (like an emergent property?), cracking atoms and plumbing the secrets of the universe.
09:18am 18/02/22 Permalink
notgreazy
Other International
1032 posts
I've been listening to a lot of talks by Zizek the crazy philosopher. He had an interesting idea regarding understanding the other. He disparages the idea that if we get to know the other we will somehow come to terms and co-exist. He argues this is bulls***, we can never truly know each other, what's needed is blissful ignorance of others. We don't need to understand others, but just to co-exist.

There is a limit of course. But in general, we should just ignore each other and our idiosyncrasies.

We're literally a few hundred million tribes constantly snarling at each other, while also almost incidentally (like an emergent property?), cracking atoms and plumbing the secrets of the universe.
this is spot on.

IMO we don't consider if an action is good for the community. By community I mean the one you live in, walk in, eat in, s*** in. Allowing people to own multiple properties is not good for the community. Higher density buildings are generally not good for the community unless they are paired with increase in facilities and services.
12:25pm 23/02/22 Permalink
infi
Brisbane, Queensland
24859 posts
I deliberately follow (both on Twitter and Facebook), writers and pages which are the opposite of my views. I like to keep up to speed with rhetoric.

This problem is not new but the technology used to suppress dissenting views and its relationship of tech oligarchs to politicians definitely is.

These technologies are public utilities. Just like the Electoral Commission's job is to ensure elections are run for the benefit of all in a fair manner, so should social media networks.

It is one thing to have freedom of speech - the freedom to print outrageous or outlandish statements, but it's another the have monopolistic power to suppress your opponents.
05:19pm 23/02/22 Permalink
trog
Other International
40214 posts
against my better judgement, but I've really basically thrown my hands up in the air these days
Does anyone else find it hard to escape their echo chambers? By escape I mean more than the ability to simply read stuff from "the other side" on whatever topic in question is. I mean engage, comment, respond with people who hold a different position than you.
can confirm I am getting increasingly radicalised by every conversation I have with people outside of what passes for my echo chamber (although for the last couple years that has really been my circle of friends and family)

not sure if infi's plan - to have citizens seize the means of [digital] production from the entrepreneurs that created them (is there a name for this?) - is the right approach but so far we've tried nothing and we're all out of ideas, so hey, might be worth a try. who are you and what have you done with infi! calling for heavy-handed government regulations on corporations - we'll have you voting Greens before you know it!

(the above is an example of an unhelpful snarky comment that will further drive any chance of polite constructive discourse auguring straight into the ground, it is included for academic purposes only)

People on the "dissenting side" having been silenced in "dominant" managed spaces congregate in areas that "dominant" proponents by and large won't visit.
the quotes are doing a lot of work in this sentence, but at the end of the day if you want to have a space that is not filled with nonsense, decisions have to get made about moderation policies

Aside from some vague limitations on these fringe groups organising - hard for me to get too worked up about Nazis being denied the right to use Facebook to organise their dopey events - there is little evidence to me that they are being silenced - go look at any QLD Health Facebook thread about COVID (or, frankly, most other topics) and you'll see they are just as full of s*** as ever. I feel like for these platforms to retain any utility whatsoever they simply can't let evil groups organise [1].

The moderation tools for subforum owners need a lot of work - there is not enough flexibility or control for administrators to effectively manage them at scale. I am not sure this is a solvable problem - FB have tried employing thousands (maybe tens of thousands, I can't remember) of humans to try to keep basic s*** like porn off and they can't do it.

So my only real constructive thought is that maybe we're just going the wrong way with all these platforms that try to get as many people in one place. Maybe one possible answer is that Internet forums should focus on small scale based on local communities (this aligns with what I have always thought about video games and dedicated servers, as an aside).

As an example, I think FB/Twitter would be a better place if politicians were only able to be followed/talked at by their constituents & people in their sphere of influence (fellow MPs, local journalists, etc). Too many politicians get caught up trying to go viral and end up getting their egos stroked by Russian trolls and fringe group morons from the other side of the planet, which deviates their thinking from the actual reality on the ground. I dunno how that would work, practically.

1. Before some free speech galaxy brain steps in and says, stroking their chin thoughtfully, "ah, but who are you to say that Nazis are evil", maybe just go f*** yourself.
09:37am 25/02/22 Permalink
Hogfather
Cairns, Queensland
17212 posts
Social networks are businesses operating in a free and open market of ideas and values. As someone mentioned above the Overton window is always in flux. Back in the day it was grown-arse adults tearing up kids' D&D books (happened to me!) and now its loopy Uncles being silenced on FB. When people are s***ting in your space and saying you can't think or act in a particular way it always sucks.

Anyway I hate them all though and installed a Pi Hole yesterday as I'm increasingly aware of information security. Turns out that just under 20% of DNS requests on my network were jank. WTF
11:57am 25/02/22 Permalink
trog
Other International
40215 posts
in unrelated news about my ongoing radicalisation, my local federal MP appears to have banned me from his Facebook page today because of a comment I made (which he has also deleted)

is this what it feels like to be banned from things? ugh it's very unpleasant, no wonder people get so angry about it
03:58pm 25/02/22 Permalink
Spook
Brisbane, Queensland
41594 posts
hahaha, what did you say trog?
04:19pm 25/02/22 Permalink
trog
Other International
40216 posts
https://trog.qgl.org/up/2202/mp-ukraine.jpg

AITA? I was asking a legit question, sure, possibly a bit obnoxiously, but I could not f*****g belieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeve he made that post at this time

I note (looking at his FB page in incognito) that he has since made a bland single-line "we stand with Ukraine" post which I guess qualifies as foreign policy
04:41pm 25/02/22 Permalink
Spook
Brisbane, Queensland
41595 posts
lolz, definately not expecting any real responses.

in his defense, im not sure what responses we can make for ukraine.

vlad is crazy and has nukes. not sure how we can really respond to what is happening.
04:51pm 25/02/22 Permalink
PornoPete
Melbourne, Victoria
4323 posts

1. Before some free speech galaxy brain steps in and says, stroking their chin thoughtfully, "ah, but who are you to say that Nazis are evil", maybe just go f*** yourself.


I agree, though I wouldn't frame it as a question, more a statement like "trog is not smart enough to say nazi's are evil".

But while we are on the subject of evil nazis, borderline retardedly mentioning ukraine to the member for taringa (who was definitely going to engage with a random who apparently cares what the greens think about anything on a topic he has no portfolio responsibility for), turns out ukraine has a neo nazi grandma's.

I for one welcome this hard line by Russia against very evil nazi's.

https://www.vice.com/en/article/v7dpdd/why-is-this-ak-47-toting-ukrainian-grandma-being-trained-by-neo-nazis

If Russians stop this definitely as evil as hilter nazi grandma from posting on facebook even once it will have been worth it.

(the above is an example of an unhelpful snarky comment that will further drive any chance of polite constructive discourse auguring straight into the ground, it is included for academic purposes only)

04:21pm 26/02/22 Permalink
Some Fat Bastard
Brisbane, Queensland
2155 posts
in unrelated news about my ongoing radicalisation, my local federal MP appears to have banned me from his Facebook page today because of a comment I made (which he has also deleted)

is this what it feels like to be banned from things? ugh it's very unpleasant, no wonder people get so angry about it


It's funny how some of the supposed freedom people want books banned in schools they don't like and there's even pastors burning books. What's the world coming to.
10:04pm 06/03/22 Permalink
PornoPete
Melbourne, Victoria
4324 posts

It's funny how some of the supposed freedom people want books banned in schools they don't like and there's even pastors burning books. What's the world coming to.


So one of the books they want removed from elementary school libraries (not quite the same as banning) is this book which gives graphic depictions of various sex acts.

Why do you want to show 8 year olds how to give blowjobs? Been to Thailand recently?
09:26am 11/03/22 Permalink
dazedandconfused
Sydney, New South Wales
942 posts
Nuance doesn't exist anymore. When you can switch your brain off and "trust the experts", it absolves you from needing to know anything about anything
09:39am 14/03/22 Permalink
Some Fat Bastard
Brisbane, Queensland
2156 posts
So one of the books they want removed from elementary school libraries (not quite the same as banning) is this book which gives graphic depictions of various sex acts.

Why do you want to show 8 year olds how to give blowjobs? Been to Thailand recently?
Wow! Excellent strawman. Did you think that all up by yourself and reach out to your f***ed up biases of an echo chamber.
01:17am 28/03/22 Permalink
Some Fat Bastard
Brisbane, Queensland
2157 posts
PornoPete, you're one hell of a zealot. Are you a fundamentalist or just a plain dismissive prick when it comes to others view that has no alignment to yours??? I'd say "F*** yeah", knob. I don't care what smartarse, arrogant and yet ignorant reply you'll give, I'll still think you're a full on knob. Have for over a decade, nothing has changed. Let's see you have a huge cry and deflect now with your pseudo intellectualism. As always. Pussy.
01:28am 28/03/22 Permalink
PornoPete
Melbourne, Victoria
4325 posts
still think you're a full on knob. Have for over a decade, nothing has changed.


Why are you so obsessed with me?

So the book I linked to is one of the specific books that people are pushing to be removed from primary school libraries.

It depicts graphic sex acts.

So if you're complaining about "supposed freedom people" "banning books" and that's the specific book they are complaining about you *must* think it's appropriate to depict blow jobs to children between the ages of 5 to 12. Either that or you were ignorant about the debate.

Take your pick. And yes I'm a "dismissive prick" about debating the merits of showing porn to young children.
09:22pm 05/04/22 Permalink
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09:22pm 05/04/22 Permalink
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