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Wednesday, March 28, 2018

A dark angel called Facebook

Por qubano22005

I remember the first time I logged-in on Facebook. I knew of it through a friend who told me it was an application to share photos with a friend and find other friends that you have not seen for years. And so it was, after registering with my personal email, I entered the wonderful planet called Facebook. Amazing how addictive it became.

From having one friend (who was a girlfriend) I almost had 500 in less than a year. Several of them were friends of my friends, people I did not know, and many of them did not even live in my country, but the addiction became so big that when I turned off the computer to go to bed, I could not wait to get up and make new friends and talk to them on Facebook.

Every day I gave likes, shared photos, uploaded and downloaded other ones and I actually found friends from whim I had not had new for years. It was a ludic world that I did not want to go away from. Moreover, I must confess that relations with a girl who would later be my girlfriend have established precisely thanks to Facebook. But, ironies of life, it was the same fantasy of the social network that made me realize of its dark side.

After a few years, my girlfriend, now my ex, broke up with me physically, but not the digital one remained, she still was my friend on Facebook, or at least it seemed that way. The truth is that among those 500 friends, I never asked myself if she would see my profile or I would see hers, I was very busy with new likes and photo uploading, especially when I found a new girl and wanted to share my happiness with the rest of the world. And in fact, it happened.

My ex-girlfriend was also a part of my new romance; the thing was that she was not indifferent. After the first photos, she stayed discreet. Then she began to harass my new lover. We no longer knew how to hide in the network of networks. How was it possible? Very simple, all my information was uploaded to the social network. My favorite places, my favorite quotes, I had exposed my entire spiritual world with my digital toy. My new girlfriend had also made the same mistake.

Quickly, the first solution was to block her off, but she already had our emails. It did not work; I could only delete our profiles. After two years and by chance I re-logged on Facebook. The funny thing is that my profile was never erased, everything was there again. Due to the characteristics my new work, I rediscovered Mark Zuckerberg's social network and saw it no longer as a playful object. It was very effective regarding propaganda and publicity.

The interesting part was that as I learned more of its use for such purposes, I was also learning more about the people who worked with me in those tasks. At the moment I felt like God, everyone was under my eyes, I knew everyone and I could see them all, it was sincerely aberrant. Without being gifted on psychology or mathematics, I could see that yes, in fact, Facebook was one of the most fascinating instruments of manipulation, espionage and play created by the human being. I was not surprised therefore when I knew of the Cambridge Analytics scandal, anyone who has really been in more than one angle of the many that the infinite universe of Facebook would notice as well.


Then it is not alarming or offensive to know that the Silicon Valley’s company from the beginning knows more about us than perhaps ourselves, but it is not surprising that the company has for years used our data to provide valuable information about our tastes and preferences to advertising companies and large economic conglomerates, and although we are not in the age of the hypodermic needle in which supposedly "the product" was inoculated, we certainly are in the epoch in which our reality is constructed by media and its images.

We are in the era of information where Google box suggests searches that eventually lead to products that want to be sold and whose companies have paid a good sum of money to reiterate the message. In fact, after Google, Facebook is the largest company in the world supported by advertising that makes its owner one of the richest entrepreneurs in the world. 98% of their income comes from the "sweetening" of the merchandise and the creation of needs.

This week, there was a revelation for some. About 50 million profiles were analyzed by an analyst company to manipulate American voters. Even the Facebook CEO himself acknowledged his guilt and promised to further protect user’s data. But will be true? It can happen, among other things, that the values of the social network go down in Wall Street, which would mean millionaire losses for their owners, as well as the dismissal of hundreds of employees if the value of the publicity and data collection is lost.

Nonetheless, and not as the devil’s lawyer of the devil it’s very easy to download the information of a person's profile. In the interface itself, just a click on the link Download a copy of your information, and the full details of our lives can be gotten, even private messages. An analyst says that Messenger is another way to get data from your phone, which makes the social network more dangerous. In addition, it’s able to compile location data and review all the traces of almost all the websites we have visited that use JavaScript.

The most dangerous is not that we provide our data but the facts that users are not prepared to secure or protect their information. Neither there is a culture to educate users and prevent them from the dangers to which they are exposed. The most disturbing, some users can even offer data from their bank accounts and financial statements.Facebook is like a poisoned candy. Its playful character immerses people in its world from which, like The Eagles’ Hotel California, “you can check in any time you like, but you can never leave”.

In the political arena and in lines with the current circumstances, we can ask ourselves if there really was collusion on the Russians’ side or if the collision came from Trump who wanted to win the elections and use all kinds of resources such as hiring profiles analysis companies. So, should trump be accused or not?