I did the exercise and can see his point. Algorithms are these things that surround us and could be described as the soul of the social media platforms we use. They are everywhere, yet we haven’t seen them, hence, we aren’t really sure of how they work.
We trust them, in the sense that if Google Search deems a website worthy of its first page, I shall click on it. They also work in mysterious ways and only a select group of people has direct contact with them.
Some people hate them, especially when the engineers change something that feels like a super big change (for example, the change in the Instagram algorithm that makes the exact same 12 account appear on my feed everymorning -in the same order!)
This analogy makes sense to me (possibly due to the 11 years I attended a catholic school), but the sense that we’ve glorified algorithms so much that we forget that there are actual humans working on them and constantly tweaking them, really gets me thinking that it’s no longer a matter of if an algorithmic culture “could be” dangerous. It’s a matter of seeing how much it’s affecting us right now, because let’s face it: that is the culture we’re already living in.