“Filter Bubble” was first coined by Eli Pariser (2011), who described it as a personalised search where algorithms guess what content myself would be interested in using data provided by yourself outlined in the video below:
Figure 1 – Filter Bubble on Biteable created by Will Jones: Sources: (El-Bermawy, 2016)
Evidence of Filter Bubbles
I conducted research into the results my father and I would receive when searching the same term.
Figure 2 – Different search results for the word “Student”
Interestingly, when searching “student” we both received different search results. I am provided with blackboard, SUSSED, accommodation in Southampton as it has used my search history and location to realise I am in Southampton and am probably looking to access resources. My dad, however, has been provided with definitions and student finance which a parent has to fill in for my student loan.
Reliability of sources
This is becoming a big issue due to the fact users are becoming separated from news and viewpoints which challenge views of their own, leaving them isolated in a world they believe is right (Martindale, 2006).
Therefore it is very important to make sure even though certain searches and Facebook news pops up on your timeline these aren’t always the truth. There are always two sides to a story, and with even fake news being publicised, what you read could be incorrect.
This effect of filter bubbles has been well publicised and is summarised in the video as well as methods to ‘pop’ your filter bubble:
Figure 3 – Filter Bubble effects and how to ‘pop” the bubble. Created by Will Jones using PowToon
Sources used: Martindale 2006; Delaney, 2017; Ponsot, 2017
In conclusion, it is necessary to venture outside your filter bubble to access reliable content to make sure you experience different views and not get stuck in a mindset where what you see and believe is always correct. Horizon (n.d) is a research group who are trying to raise awareness of this in young people and trying to enable people to have more control.
Word Count – 309
http://www.readacrosstheaisle.com – The app which will help you burst your filter bubble (mentioned in figure 3)
Delaney, K. (2017). Filter bubbles are a serious problem with news, says Bill Gates. [online] Quartz. Available at: https://qz.com/913114/bill-gates-says-filter-bubbles-are-a-serious-problem-with-news/ [Accessed 10 Mar. 2018].
El-Bermawy, M. (2016). Your Filter Bubble is Destroying Democracy. [online] WIRED. Available at: https://www.wired.com/2016/11/filter-bubble-destroying-democracy/ [Accessed 10 Mar. 2018].
Hern, A. (2017). How social media filter bubbles and algorithms influence the election. [online] the Guardian. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/may/22/social-media-election-facebook-filter-bubbles [Accessed 10 Mar. 2018].
Horizon (n.d.). UnBias: Emancipating Users Against Algorithmic Biases for a Trusted Digital Economy. [online] Horizon. Available at: https://www.horizon.ac.uk/project/unbias-emancipating-users-against-algorithmic-biases-for-a-trusted-digital-economy/ [Accessed 10 Mar. 2018].
Martindale, J. (2016). Forget Facebook and Google, burst your own filter bubble. [online] Digital Trends. Available at: https://www.digitaltrends.com/social-media/fake-news-and-filter-bubbles/ [Accessed 10 Mar. 2018].
Pariser, E. (2011). Eli Parisier: Beware online “filter bubbles” [Video] Retrieved from: https://www.ted.com/talks/eli_pariser_beware_online_filter_bubbles/details
Ponsot, E. (2017). A complete guide to seeing the news beyond your cozy filter bubble. [online] Quartz. Available at: https://qz.com/896000/a-complete-guide-to-seeing-beyond-your-cozy-filter-bubble/ [Accessed 10 Mar. 2018]