It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Fake news or real? or how to become media savvy: Search engines and social media bias
Your guide to learning how to find credible sources about governmental and political issues.
Much of the media we engage with today is selected for us by algorithms. This is true on social platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter; on video streaming services like YouTube and Netflix; on music streaming services like Pandora and Spotify; on shopping websites like Amazon; and especially in the ads we see across the internet. It is often claimed that these algorithms are responsible for boosting one point of view while censoring another — amplifying the biases of the programmers who build these tools and influencing what we believe, what we care about, and even how we vote.
Algorithms are aimed at optimizing everything. They can save lives, make things easier and conquer chaos. Still, experts worry they can also put too much control in the hands of corporations and governments, perpetuate bias, create filter bubbles, cut choices, creativity and serendipity, and could result in greater unemployment
"The editorial decisions of a newspaper or television news program are immediately apparent (articles published, segments aired) and so can be readily analyzed for bias and effect. By contrast, the editorial decisions of social media algorithms are opaque and slow to be discovered — even to those who run the platforms. It can take days or weeks before anyone finds out what has been disseminated by social media software."