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11-15-18 07:27:25 AM

Jul - General Chat - Sooo... Mastodon? New poll - New thread - New reply
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Xkeeper

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Posted on 09-09-18 10:31:57 PM (last edited by Xkeeper at 09-09-18 10:32:17 PM) Link | Quote
Originally posted by Tarale
Originally posted by marrub
One wrong move and the idea of justice turns to blaming innocents. Turns out that's no different in any social media corner. Won't reiterate because I don't want to bring drama here, but many people are bailing for a good reason. Ugh.

Which is exactly what I was worried about when I talked about mob rule earlier.

I wish I knew the answer though. It definitely is part and parcel of how microblogging works.

I don't know if there is an answer. I don't think there is.

In fact, thinking about it, you end up with the same kind of situation anywhere you can do this sort of thing. Consider e-mail, for example; it's much, much easier to hit Fwd: on that email instead of taking ten seconds to see if it's legitimate, and you can blast it out to everyone on your contact list with a few buttons. (My grandfather actually does this pretty often, enough so that I have a filter that automatically dumps anything with the forward marker in the subject line directly into the trash.)

Snopes came up as a way to refute that sort of thing, and it's been all but completely useless. Even when someone does go look it up, that's... one person who's learned the truth now, out of how many? One forward from a typical conspiracy sharer reaches tens, if not hundreds, of people, and due to the way human brains work, even if they take the time to send the facts back, most people won't admit they're wrong.

Social media and microblogging have sort of distilled that into an essence; write a post, goes viral, gets shared to thousands (or millions) of eyes, then is copied, pasted, screenshotted, cross-posted, etc. until it's difficult to have not seen it.

And if someone takes the time to show how the original post is full of crap? Well, nobody's going to share that, and it's not like deleting it makes other people forget.


At least with older forms, where there was a sort of. Central place? There could be an Correction: this article incorrectly said (thing); we have updated it to correctly say (thing) note at the top, noting the error and correcting it. You don't get that here.

Not to mention that virality rewards the most breath-taking, unbelievable clickbaity garbage possible...
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Posted on 09-09-18 11:00:33 PM (last edited by hydra-calm at 09-09-18 11:02:42 PM) Link | Quote
I think we'll eventually see a point where technological efficiency and information saturation enable a situation where this kind of chain letter garbage driving social conflict from both sides, totally independent of reality, is the norm. I hope it's in 50 or 60 years rather than 5, but the rapid transformation of the internet over the past 10-15 makes me wonder if that's wishful thinking.

I have no idea what sanely navigating something like that will look like, if it's even possible...
Xkeeper

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Posted on 09-09-18 11:44:31 PM Link | Quote
I think at that point, we'll be in a WarGames situation; the only winning move is not to play.
Tarale
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Posted on 09-10-18 12:04:34 AM Link | Quote
I think SOME of the answer is in smaller spaces, perhaps. I mean, we're not really wired to deal with humanity as a whole. Like, can't we only reasonably conceive of a few hundred people *as being actual people*? I dunno how true the whole Dunbar's Number thing actually is, but it states you can only maintain (stable) relationships with about 150 people.

But these new social things open us up to… everyone. EVERYONE everyone. Like, that's… really crazy. So when someone posts something that seems, free of context or whatever, douchey, it's difficult to even conceive of them as a human being. And god people love some "justice" too, AND CAN YOU EVEN BELIEVE THIS POST OH WOW, so let's all dogpile that guy, whose humanity we don't even recognise, let's let him fucking have it.

Not that small communities are without their drama, of course. We all remember, don't we? BUT it was a bit less… like this.
mycophobia

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Posted on 09-10-18 12:20:29 AM Link | Quote
Originally posted by hydra-calm
I think we'll eventually see a point where technological efficiency and information saturation enable a situation where this kind of chain letter garbage driving social conflict from both sides, totally independent of reality, is the norm. I hope it's in 50 or 60 years rather than 5, but the rapid transformation of the internet over the past 10-15 makes me wonder if that's wishful thinking.

I have no idea what sanely navigating something like that will look like, if it's even possible...


memes and political opinions will be involuntarily and automatically zapped to your mind... D:
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Posted on 09-10-18 12:58:29 AM Link | Quote
Originally posted by mycophobia
memes and political opinions will be involuntarily and automatically zapped to your mind... D:


jesus no

internet kill switch now please
Xkeeper

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Posted on 09-10-18 01:25:00 AM Link | Quote
Originally posted by Tarale
Not that small communities are without their drama, of course. We all remember, don't we? BUT it was a bit less… like this.

I want to say that at least part of the turmoil from years ago was just because we were all much younger (some of us, half as old as we are now, or even less) ... We've mostly matured, and I think having more mature people in leadership, with some experience in doing so, would make things a lot more bearable.

I mean, for the most part, this place's been pretty stable, especially over the last few years. It's also been really quiet, but still! Things here generally don't get out of hand, and if someone has an issue we can take the time to sit down and evaluate what's going on. Even with TCRF, just today I had someone come to me with some questions about a content debate. They gave me some links to look at, I took some time to review what was going on, and then I was able to make a clear-headed decision without needing to rush to judge anyone.

In talking to someone about what's been going on, I think at least part of the problem is how fast everything is. You have to react fast. You have to be constantly paying attention, or you just drown. Here, you can sit on a thread for a few days, or draft a few replies until you figure out what you want to say. In these spaces, you don't get anything near that luxury — you're expected to react instantly, and then what you say becomes largely impermeable... and how fast it spreads, too; here you get a few minutes to edit a thought or come back to it later, but in social media spaces, once it's out there, it's out there.

While on forums and newspapers and such you have quoting, you can still go back and edit the original. Someone can keep a copy of it (or worse, edit it into something else), but you can always go back and be like, "Here are some bad opinions I had because I was a dumbass It's years later and this was as wrong then as it is now, but I didn't know better at the time" ... You can't do that on social media at all. At best, you can try replying to what you said, but that's no promise that it'll ever reach anyone, and most stuff is shared via screenshots these days anyway ...
Tarale
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Posted on 09-10-18 01:40:10 AM Link | Quote
Even ye olde turmoil was fairly… contained. I could be a dick on a forum (even a forum I was the administrator of hahaha oh god why), and sure, I'd piss off the forum, BUT I wouldn't suddenly receive messages from hundreds or thousands of strangers. I wouldn't get doxxed. My employers wouldn't hear about it, or my mum, or my neighbours. A SWAT team wouldn't turn up. Just everyone else on the forum thought I was an arse. I mean, it's not like there were no consequences. Just… not like this.

I mean, once upon a time, someone tried to blackmail me (as the then admin of the forum) with some sensitive information about myself over a ban. I chose to disclose that very personal information to the forum to take away his leverage. I knew most of the forum would be cool about it, and it was generally contained TO the forum and maybe parts of the surrounding fandom. But NOW?? Saying that shit, just, like, on Twitter? You run so much more *risk*, like, hooooooooooly shit. HOOOOOOOLYYYYYYYY SHIIIIIIIT.

Also google knows all now but that's another issue.

But yeah, it was different. Also, yes, speed is part of it. Sometimes forumdrama would be quick and you'd have to react fast. But not like having, again, literally any fuckwit anywhere just possibly waiting… it feels like everyone is sitting on timebombs now. Either from some shit out of context you say now or tomorrow. Or some shit you said years and years ago, also out of context. Because you've pissed off some random guy who RT'd you to some other fuckwits…
Xkeeper

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Posted on 09-10-18 01:44:28 AM Link | Quote
The consequences were usually in proportion to what was done, as opposed to "this person said something weird, we'd better call the firing squad", basically.
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Posted on 09-10-18 11:35:42 PM Link | Quote
I am not a huge fan nor a user of social media sans Instagram for the sake of art and photos of my friends and Facebook purely for local events and concerts, but this last page of conversation has diverged into more or less a discussion on the implications of the broadening of basis of power in terms of information, which is a pretty interesting topic to me.

The internet is, at least from my perspective, the largest experiment of anarchy* society has seen. The advent of free social media sites means that for the first time in history publishing is an act anyone** can do. This has many implications, including multiple negative ones that people ought to be aware of and many have been in this thread. My beliefs lead me to trust that most of these negative implications are not set to doom society. That being said, I also think that the only point at which this will become believable to general observers is once a series of catalysts takes place.

Originally posted by Xkeeper
[people constantly forward, share, and retweet bullshit, and there doesn't exist any ways to counteract this]

Originally posted by hydra-calm
I think we'll eventually see a point where technological efficiency and information saturation enable a situation where this kind of chain letter garbage driving social conflict from both sides, totally independent of reality, is the norm.

I see these as both being complaints that stem from the ability for anyone to have equal or comparable power to societally normalized forms of information, such as news publishers, authors, etc. The driving hand of accuracy in reporting and the spread of information has been, in recent history, concepts of the 'free market' holding publishers to be as truthful as they need be in order to retain consumers, and more broadly in history usually some form of state or board dictating what is fit to be released to the public. Both of these kinds of forces are flawed, but have kept people generally complacent in knowing that at least they're getting a reality consistent with the reality that they've been told is correct. The internet throws this out the window, and social media puts the whole process into overdrive.

This is, currently, kind of bad. People aren't particularly thoughtful about what they share and don't recognize their power as a publisher. Every argument regarding heightened autonomy usually ends up getting into the idea that most people are unable to handle power, and that entrusting everyone with high amounts of power will lead to chaos and inevitably will make any system in question crumble. This could certainly be true, and is too broad of a topic to really get into - but I will make the case that at least as far as the internet is concerned, it isn't true.

Consider a scenario where people were told every time that they went to retweet something that it would then end up in a book that would be published with their name on the cover. Generally speaking, people might then think more about what they're doing. Obviously enough this would never happen, but it serves as a way to visualize the mechanism in which people become enlightened about their autonomy. This is as an example of solutions through hard power - it's akin to Twitter or Facebook policing their networks more thoroughly or a government producing laws that prevent people from spreading fake news. The arc of history says that this is probably going to happen, but my senses also tell me that even with the most intense scrubbing of bullshit off the internet an artificial solution from a place of higher power isn't going to solve the problem. Instead, the solution will more likely be born through a gradual awareness - through people themselves relearning the responsibility needed to take actions in the lens of the internet.

To avoid writing a book about this concept, I'm just going to quote Aristotle. He argued that taking responsibility involves more than just attempting to determine what one ought to do: one must also take the additional burdens of reflecting on motives, looking at various outcomes, considering principles, and so on. Basically, being able to choose how one acts makes one responsible, but merely choice is not in itself enough to constitute taking responsibility for one’s actions. People in real life tend to realize this*** - the main exception being children, as children don't possess developed reasoning. Since the internet is young - incredibly young - I feel like people in society are children on the internet, which to many feels like a separate world they were born into a mere few years ago. My faith is that as more fake news catastrophes such as Pizza Gate break, and as awareness is spread about the very real effects that fake news has, people will become more aware of the power that they have. Since people are slow to learn, it's probably not going to happen fast, and will probably take a lot of incredibly bad events happening for real changes to surface.

This is a purely philosophical position and doesn't hold much weight in the sense of empirics. I hope it holds true because I'm sick of corporations and governments having the final say in what I know about the world in the sense of news, and a break away from that is a very positive benefit that the internet could provide.

Also I want to add that this isn't to say that websites like Twitter shouldn't be more on top of things, because they certainly should. I don't believe that it will lead to any long-term change in the way information on the internet is spread, but simultaneously Twitter should take responsibility for some of the shitty things that their users are spreading.

Originally posted by Xkeeper
"this person said something weird, we'd better call the firing squad"

This is a testament to the power of foul spirited internet-based collective 'justice'. I don't have much to say about it except it's usually pretty fucked up and I hope my general philosophy about people gaining awareness about their power on the internet carries through to their sense of justice as well. I have less hope on this front but it would be consistent to say that it would.


* - in the political sense, not in the pop culture sense
** - anyone with an internet connection!
*** - not in words, of course, but in consideration of their actions - it's commonly lumped together with the concept of 'maturity'
Xkeeper

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Posted on 09-11-18 01:20:05 AM Link | Quote
That's a long post, almost too much to really digest in one go... or at least too much to reply to in one.


This is, currently, kind of bad.

Contender for "understatement of the year" award, here.


Consider a scenario where people were told every time that they went to retweet something that it would then end up in a book that would be published with their name on the cover. Generally speaking, people might then think more about what they're doing. Obviously enough this would never happen, but it serves as a way to visualize the mechanism in which people become enlightened about their autonomy.

Facebook and such already kind of do this, requiring your real name and putting it over everything. Not quite to the same degree, but a lot of the worst types of people who are spreading this kind of misinformation aren't hindered by this — or don't care, because they're using a fake identity anyway.

A lack of consequences is what really drives this home; even if what someone does is public, that hasn't stopped anybody. There are still racists out there calling the phone because ~scary black people~ are grilling, and out-and-proud literal Nazis — even when they get punched in the face.


He argued that taking responsibility involves more than just attempting to determine what one ought to do: one must also take the additional burdens of reflecting on motives, looking at various outcomes, considering principles, and so on. Basically, being able to choose how one acts makes one responsible, but merely choice is not in itself enough to constitute taking responsibility for one’s actions. People in real life tend to realize this

The problem I see with this is that it requires that people have some concept of morals, and an understanding of consequences of various choices. To someone who is raised in an environment full of total bullshit, racism, and other horrible things, they're going to carry that forward — because to them, that is normality. They don't understand different things. In many cases, they haven't needed to exercise critical thinking, and they're kept from other points of view.

When you're raised in an environment that only exposes you to garbage, you learn only garbage.

The thing that is needed most is that people need to experience consequences for being wrong, and be shown how to do things properly. For those who are already deep into adulthood, well, good luck, but...
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Posted on 09-20-18 05:05:39 PM Link | Quote
I can't seem to bring myself to use social media but i might give mastodon a chance seeing as i've made some friends here already
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Posted on 09-20-18 06:32:09 PM Link | Quote
At first glance it looks somewhat confusing to me and in general not terribly exciting (the "nazis" on Twitter were never that much of a thorn in my side), but I felt pretty much the same way about Tumblr, Instagram, and Snapchat back when they all first came out - I might register on it just so I can say I was there this early on because I'm an idiot.
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Posted on 09-21-18 05:31:17 PM Link | Quote
So I finally created a Mastodon account.
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Posted on 09-24-18 03:23:29 PM Link | Quote
I'm still wondering when the first big 'test' is going to happen... Mastodon is largely a "trust thy neighbor" setup w/r/t ActivityPub, but it's entirely possible to use said protocol to do a ton of spamming and annoying crap. The larger it gets, the more attractive of a target it becomes...

For now, at least things seem to have settled down again.
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Posted on 09-26-18 09:54:53 AM Link | Quote
Originally posted by Xkeeper
I'm still wondering when the first big 'test' is going to happen... Mastodon is largely a "trust thy neighbor" setup w/r/t ActivityPub, but it's entirely possible to use said protocol to do a ton of spamming and annoying crap. The larger it gets, the more attractive of a target it becomes...


People have tried, maybe not people with the kind of resources you're expecting yet, but the level of containment relies on reactive enough admins. Local instances can lock account creation while they block or silence remotes. Accounts can be suspended, can probably even automate suspensions/account deletions if necessary. If they launch an instance to spam from, that can be blocked out too.

Originally posted by Xkeeper
For now, at least things seem to have settled down again.


Careful, don't jinx it.
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