Social dilemma: a strange phenomenon
I recently saw a documentary, "the social dilemma," Chinese translation of "Smart Traps," shot by former senior members of mainstream social media such as Google, Facebook and Twitter. There are a lot of thought-thing ideas, such as why social apps like Facebook, Tik Tok, and Twitter are free. Why don't users pay for their products?
If you don't pay for the product, then you're the product.
The truth behind this "free" is that in a commercial model that is profitable in advertising, every company is desperately trying to find out how to get users' attention so that they can sell advertisers higher prices. To that end, Internet giants are studying the mechanisms of human addiction and inducing dependence.
But what makes me think more deeply is the social dilemma that the documentary presents:
Social networks were invented with the idea of making people more connected, and indeed brought a lot of convenience to our society.
But the huge social network, finally only found advertising this efficient profit model, in order to make a profit, for the benefit of shareholders, we need to create greater advertising value.
The value of advertising comes from users, so a variety of growth strategies, addiction mechanisms have been studied, big data, AI is used to predict user behavior, and ultimately let users spend more time on this social product.
The end result is not what we expected at first, and the social network's original intentions are good, but they have put us in a dangerous position. It's no longer a tool waiting to be used, but a "goal of its own" - to manipulate the user's mind to make it more frequently used。
It also reminds me of the strange phenomenon that has occurred in the education industry:
Education and training in China has developed into a huge industry, K12 training institutions are originally designed to help children better study, enter a good university, find a good job.
More and more Qingbei and other colleges and universities, found that after graduation work is not good to find, after weighing the pros and cons, it is better to become a training institution teacher, teach the next generation of children how to be a school bully.
The result is hard-working primary school 6 years, middle school 6 years, university 4 years, in the middle of various training courses, and finally in order to go to training institutions as teachers.
Of course, I do not say that college graduates as teachers is not good, everyone has their own choice, after all, the training institutions teachers pay is good, training institutions also need high-quality teachers. Qingbei and other college students, in the training industry itself is very advantageous.
We wanted to help our children get into college better, but in the process, it gradually evolved into more competition, getting into a good university didn't get any easier, and finding a good job was harder.
Like social networks, the entire education industry chain involves the interests of too many people, and all stakeholders are strengthening the chain for their own benefit. But behind this, there may be something invisible that is changing our society.
This should not be the purpose of education.
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