Shortly on 22C+ I will be writing a review of Eli Pariser's book The Filter Bubble: What the Internet is Hiding from You. It's a book that should be read by anyone who is interested in the future of the internet and information in general. The book begins with the revelation that in 2008 Google changed its search engine to make it more personalised. It is now true that two people doing the same web search will not necessarily get the same results, because the software "knows" your web history, tailors the results, and feeds back to you the information it 'thinks' you want. In recent times Facebook, Amazon, Yahoo and many other major internet organsiations have followed suit. The result is that you are now being fed a less diversified diet of information when you surf the net. The real (at least on the net) is beginning to look like a circle of ever-diminishing size. This is not what the internet was supposed to be! We should all be concerned because there are 'choices' being made which effect what we "perceive" in the world, and they are not being made by us. They are increasingly made by machines, and those machines are owned and operated by gargantuan internet corporations - run by a 26 year old in the case of FaceBook.
My review will appear here in a day or two. In the meantime, here is an excellent TED talk by Pariser which outlines his essential arguments.