Fake news / / Surveillance capitalism / Persuasive technology / Growth hacking / Polarisation / Rabbit holes / Utopia / Dystopia / Manipulation / Algorithms… The Social Media Dilemma word cloud BOMB.
If, like me, you recently watched the 1 hour and 34 minute documentary The Social Media Dilemma [Netflix], you were probably left quite shaken, disturbed and the best way to describe it, a sick feeling in the pit of your stomach. Was it just me who felt this?
It’s quite the conundrum for someone like me.
You see I just love social media. It’s my jam.
Combining a Marketing degree from way back when social media didn’t even exist with my love of socials and digital marketing, I know very well how we are advertised to and the level of data captured by various digital channels. So, none of that was a shock to me. I bank on this working for my clients to increase their reach and conversion rate to sales, hence increasing their profits. Hey, that’s what they’re paying me for right?
On the flipside, from a personal level, I have two children who are Fortnite gamers and love You Tubing. My 13 year old loves Tik Tok and we share many laughs over various videos. Tik Toks and WhatsApp videos are sent to me and at a time when teenagers tend to hide away, this is one method by which we stay connected. I’m grateful for it.
This leads me onto the one point this documentary didn’t quite capture but only briefly touched on. Facebook was initially created to connect to others, there was goodness in it until profits needed to be increased quarter on quarter, year on year. It seems that this is the point in time where things went a little haywire. But the documentary didn’t really touch on any positives? The laughs shared over silly videos. The connections with friends and family? How about the support received via messaging? More importantly for me personally, how about the wisdom shared like my go-to viral wisdom guru and former monk Jay Shetty?
What this documentary presents is a world where we as human beings are being marketed to and subconsciously brainwashed and yes, it is scary. What’s the ‘problem’? How do we fix it? This was pretty much left unanswered. Maybe it’s that we as human beings are the problem? It’s a systemic issue?
So many questions. What are the answers?
I’d really love to hear your thoughts on this dilemma I feel we’re all facing.
For me, I’ll continue to love my socials. I’ll continue to market my clients’ products and services and I feel justified in doing so because they are ethical, and they deserve to be out in the market to fulfill the needs of consumers.
I’ll continue to allow my kids to watch limited You Tube and Tik Tok with strict time limitations [which has always been the case in my household] and I’ll continue to educate them about the dangers of cyber bullying and falling down the wrong rabbit hole. AND, I’ll be sitting next to them whilst we watch this documentary together.
Have you watched The Social Dilemma? What are your thoughts?