What are we going to do with(out) social media? August 7, 2009

Fail Whale!Yesterday’s large scale DDoS attacks were certainly annoying. Between Twitter, LiveJournal and Facebook being down, it was hard to go through my day with any real normalcy. Like everyone else, I was left incommunicado. After my initial annoyance, I got to thinking: What happens when we only have the internet to turn to for our news?

As more and more people turn to social media for instant news, it makes it easier for malicious people to not only infect the stream with falsehoods, as we saw/still see with the Iran Election, but to completely block people from getting to the information in the first place. I don’t have any good solutions to this problem, but it is obviously something we should all be talking about a lot more.

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Published by Anna G. @ 2:07 pm
Filed under: Culture,Technology — Tags: , ,
  1. But couldn’t this same thought be applied to news before the internet? Whenever you have only one place to go for news, you’re in trouble, but I think we’re getting more diverse places to go for news, not fewer. Like, imagine – what if all we had for our news was newspapers? The printing presses could break, couldn’t they? If you get your news only from one forum, you’re taking a risk, whether that forum is the internet, or newspapers, or TV, or NPR, or what have you. Luckily, in this day and age, we’ve got loads of places to turn for the news – not just the internet.

    Comment by Elizabeth — August 9, 2009 @ 8:56 pm

  2. @Elizabeth, I think that’s a very valid point, and a strong counter to the popular argument that print media is dead. Aside from fitting into the comfortable cliché of opening up a newspaper while having a morning coffee, printed news still has extensive value. I think IDEO did a great job of pointing out that tangible media would benefit from being more dynamic, but right now our society associates dynamism with live updates from the internet – and then you have the same problem of being dependent on the internet to deliver your news. It’s a fascinating problem.

    Comment by Lia N. — August 10, 2009 @ 10:00 pm

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