The ramifications A.I.

This is a bit of a cutesy title as A.I. or machine learning or deep learning or whatever the “buzzword du jour is” is just a fancy algorithms.

You’ll find countless books, presentations, articles and more on the dangers of algorithms but it’s always interesting to see it in action.

As many have demonstrated, the AI often just reinforces existing biases and power structures. A very simple example is Facebook. Most of the traffic to my site comes from Facebook, and posts have 2 real trajectories in terms of views. Either it will get ~10 views (usually something like plant pictures, or how it’s not that bad). Or it will get ~80-100 views, and those with > 50 views usually have a few things in common, they are usually negative, on negative topics, or gossipy.

What is that Facebook is showing my post to a few people, see how they react and then, if there’s some engagement, they start to show it to a wider and wider circle of folks. In effect, the posts you read of mine is impacted by the Facebook algorithm.

Having worked with many news organization, it’s understandable how they came to worship the algorithm and employ (mostly) snake oil SEO folks to try to appease the gods.

Anyway, that’s what I tell myself when a “good” post doesn’t get as much traffic 😉

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