Skip to comments.Why Facebook's 'Voter Megaphone' Is the Real Manipulation to Worry About
Posted on 07/06/2014 10:26:31 AM PDT by dalight
Two years ago, on the morning of the 2012 election in the United States, I got an email with an urgent subject line: "You should write the story of how Facebook blew an opportunity to turn out 300k voters." The sender, a veteran progressive online activist who would prefer to remain anonymous, was upset for good reason. The election was bound to be close, and as of 10am that morning he hadn't yet seen an "I'm Voting" button on his Facebook page, nor had another colleague of his. Nor was one on my own Facebook page.
Given that when Facebook deployed a similar "I Voted" button in 2010, and added messages in users' News Feeds showing them the names and faces of friends who had said they voted, the cumulative effect boosted turnout then by at least 340,000 votes, these activists had good reason to be concerned. Facebook had announced that it was going to do the same thing in 2012, and this time around its American user base had grown enormously, from 61 million to more than 160 million. A social and visible nudge like an "I'm Voting" button had the potential to measurably increase turnout, even more so as Facebook was including a useful tool to help people find their polling places. And yet on Election Day 2012 its deployment was far from universal. Facebook was conducting research on us.
(Excerpt) Read more at techpresident.com ...
I’ve called it “Socialist Networking” for a reason.
Funny to see progressives getting their panties in a wad because people on such sites are pushing their buttons to effect group think.
"But that said, assuming the manipulations used by Facebook in 2012 had a positive effect on its users voting behavior, then it is quite likely that Facebook actually tilted the 2012 election towards Obama. This is because membership and usage of Facebook is not uniform across different demographic groups in the United States. According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project, women are ten points more likely to use it than men; young people are almost twice as likely to be on Facebook than people over 65; and urban dwellers are slightly more likely to use it than rural folks. (it's no coincidence, I think, that socially progressive campaigns like the movement for marriage equality are benefitting enormously from Facebook's reach and companies like Upworthy are driving huge levels of engagement through Facebook.)
Assuming that the contagion effect is uniform, a nudge that increased voter participation by adult American Facebook users probably pushed more Obama voters than Romney voters to go vote, because Obama did better with women, young people and urban dwellers. Women were 53% of the overall vote, and they went for Obama over Romney by 55 to 44 percent. The youngest voters, 18- to 29-year-old, went for Obama by 60 to 37 percent. Big city dwellers gave Obama a whopping 69 percent of their votes; mid-sized city dwellers gave him 58 percent.
When I asked Professor Bond directly if it were possible that the Facebook contagion effect helped increase Obamas vote more than Romneys, he answered, I would say that it is possible, but that we didn't test for this at all and it would be quite difficult to tell for sure." He noted that "Democrats and Republicans seem to have been equally responsive to the  treatment" but also that they observed variations in the contagion effect by demographic group."
ALL of Facebook is pushing group think.
Trust none of it.
It pushes one hell of an agenda at the polls and elsewhere.
Nut-job Conspiracy Theory Ping!
To get onto The Nut-job Conspiracy Theory Ping List you must threaten to report me to the Mods if I don't add you to the list...
Can I get an “I Abstained” button, instead? :)
As you are probably a conservative, they would happily would have given you one of those if they had thought of it, I am sure. ;)
Expect massive voter fraud.
Would they be able to stop people from doing it personally? Tweeting, emailing, actually telling people why we need to vote for the better candidate even if they are not the perfect candidate (Jesus has never been on a ballot).
If you think this one was fun.. off into pajama land..
Was The Department Of Defense Behind Facebooks Controversial Manipulation Study?
I want to say no, but I know of many people who tried to post to FB during the 2012 election cycle and had their content blocked, or got blocked themselves. So, yes sometimes they seemed to do that. But, this is more subtle. Letting the "robots" nudge you, as Cass Sunstein would say..
that’s okay soon they will vote for us and then let us know how we voted
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