Photo Credit: Netflix
Netflix recently launched a documentary-drama called Social Dilemma. It takes an in-depth look about how social media plays a massive role in allegedly manipulating and rewiring our brains to get our attention, buy products, and believe ideas about each other, ourselves and the world.
The Dark Side Of Social Media
Although there have been a few movies with quite a similar premise, Social Dilemma has the advantage of having on-screen interviews with pioneers in the industry. For years, they worked as top executives for some of the largest social platforms today.
These are experts who, on the record, candidly and sometimes uncomfortably admitted that the “dark side” of social media does exist. They are the very same Silicon Valley minds who helped design a platform that is seductive enough for humans to stay stuck on their screens and share more personal information.
The ‘experts’ have been part of creating an impressive business model – one that generates valuable data from users’ behaviour and every click online. The data is utilised to target specific audiences that are more likely to convert or those who are more inclined to engage specific services, buy products or accept and share an entire belief system. The film even mentioned that with the amount of data generated and analysed, social media was able to influence recent social and cultural shifts.
Is Social Media Good Or Bad For Us?
The movie included dramatic snippets showing the effects of using these platforms on an ordinary family, (from the children choosing screen time over actual social interaction, young adults being gullible to join a movement they know little about and teens being affected by comments and LIKES.)
Undoubtedly, it focused heavily on bringing to light some of the extremely negative impact of social media in today’s society. However, let’s not forget its benefits — how it brought families together, how it helped bring down oppressive government regimes and how each of us can find what we need conveniently.