Blue feed, red feed: side-by-side comparisons of social media feeds by politics

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Man, facebook sucks.


Jeez both feeds are full of stuff that make me shake my head.


#Find Out How Deep The Rabbit Hole Really Goes…

(any person or organization that is so actively and blatantly polarizing people should be considered an enemy of peace, reason, and progress. especially when it is for profit. shame on you FB, for shame…with great power comes GREAT RESPONSIBILITY!)


No body wants to see stuff on their feed they don’t like. The whole way that it is set up it is guaranteed to do nothing but confirm your biases.

That is why you can unfriend people you don’t like, and basic algorithms will keep shoving the frosting of your preferred color into your cake hole once you start clicking and liking stuff like that in your feed. I very rarely click on news stories and never like them, thus my FB diet probably won’t give me diabetes. People who do will get a constant slant in to their feed so they don’t have to go out and find the real answers - many of them contradictory to what they think.


I think the most worrying thing about this is where they consider their political centre point to be.

For the USA, it’s roughly 5-7 for the dems and 8-10 for the republicans on a 0-10 scale of left-wing to right-wing…
Actual sane centre-ground is (5), a fair bit to the left of the majority of the democratic party, Sanders was closest to the most moderate position. This moderate-centre position is labled ‘extreme-left’ by the corporate media…


the Red Feed is still slagging on Clinton just as hard as before the election.

Someone was just saying that fascist movements are always only defined by what they are against.


This is kinda why I keep a couple folks on G+ whose feeds routinely contain things that seem not only to disagree with me, but almost precisely to get under my skin in the process.

In a lot of cases I think they’re coming at something from the wrong angle, assuming bad faith, or construing a lesser problem to imply something magnitudes worse.

And everyone, even folks who agree with me, tend to turn the snark up to 11, condescend, casually dismiss, assume the utter naivety of opponents, report without full information or cherry-pick the data, simplify complex arguments to a meme, ad hominem, and use their own equivalent of look at those dummies jokes.
Both sides do this stuff!

Granted, I think one side is worse than the other, but it almost doesn’t matter.

I am utterly convinced that this stuff does little if anything to win anyone over. More likely the demonized will close ranks and refuse to credit anything else coming from your lips.

Additionally, no one likes insincerity and everyone loathes a hypocrite.
More than ever, this election cycle has taught me that the degree of hypocrisy in one’s allies matters little compared the the mere presence of hypocrisy in an opponent.


The main difference I notice is that the red feed has lots of stories that are utter bullshit already debunked by Politifact/Snopes/etc. The blue feed has some bullshit but at least it tends to be phrased as a question, and doesn’t use caps lock all the time.


… and yet another thing I had thought I would never say: good on you, WSJ! That’s showing some real responsibility, and will perhaps encourage others.


From the point of view of the attention-farming industry, it’s a flaw that you’re even able to do this. They don’t want your default view to surface anything that won’t trigger clicking behavior in the subject showcase the content you love.

If G+ weren’t the software equivalent of a lame horse happily munching grass while the vet looks for the shotgun cartridge that rolled under her front seat, Google probably would have already “fixed” this behavior. Did you ever try doing a Google search without results based on your location?


It might just be WSJ trying to take a step towards regaining control of the news environment. Mainstream media appears to be hemorrhaging customers to the fake news sites. This could be the start of a campaign aimed at holding up fake news to the light. Of course, fake news isn’t about facts, so this might not be an effective technique.

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Regarding the whole, “Obama is going to stop pensioners from purchasing firearms” story; I would have thought that any self respecting home defender would already have amassed a suitable stockpile before passing pensionable age?

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from this it follows that activists are rebranded as eco-terrorists, organizing calls are rebranded as anti-police sentiment, and responsibility for the escalation to violence by the state is rebranded as being the responsibility of the one at the wrong end of the truncheon.


This is what the WSJ says about the feeds:

For a site appearing in the Journal’s red feed, a majority of the articles shared from it were classified in the study as “very conservatively aligned.” How did Facebook researchers calculate that? They examined the self-described political leanings of people who shared links on Facebook to calculate a political “alignment score” for each link. Using that score, they grouped the links into five categories, from “very conservative” to “very liberal.” So that site’s current content appears in the Journal’s conservative column because more than half of its links fell into the “very conservative” category during the period of the study (July 7, 2014 through January 7, 2015).

This seems to be an important point, as you’re getting columns of articles that are circulated more by the extremes on both sides, and less by the moderates. This eliminates a lot of mainstream media and more balanced/factual/well researched articles, and leaves you with the reactionary and sensationalist ones. These are all articles from sources with at least 100,000 followers, but that is not a huge number and it doesn’t say much about the proportion of fake news articles shared by each side.


Does anyone remember this? Perhaps not remembering is the point…

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Now I feel bad for G+ :cry:

“social media feeds” are to “news” as “cotton candy” is to “balanced diet”


G+ is kind of a weirdo, but the RPG communities I’m part of have integrated themselves heavily into it.

Every now and then Google revamps some major thing about it and everyone throws a million duck fits, but then have to deal with it anyway (Google doesn’t listen to suggestions as far as we can tell).

In theory G+ might allow better filtering than Facebook, but it’s largely optional. Post categories include:
Public - Reabable by anyone.
Communities - Like shared forums/mailing lists.
Circles - Like your own personal mailing lists.
Collections - Categories of posts (public or private) the followers can opt out of subscribing to. Perhaps the ultimate means to filter (“Your politics intrigue me, but I could deal without your poopy-butts collection.”).
+1 Sharing - Every time you “thumbs-up” something, there’s a chance your followers will get automatically notified of that fact by default. Thumbs-uppers can set their accounts not to share this information, and many wish they would cease sharing it. But many never get around to shutting it off.

Although I decided awhile back to let through a few political sources that irk me, I am prudish enough to filter out some of the NSFW stuff folks casually drop into the feed.

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You should check out Quora: Land of right wing push polls and their vast array of left wing respondents.

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