Facebook Steps Up
Jeff Jarvis

Gee, this sounds strangely familiar… and yet nobody points out that the “mark as satire” feature was curiously not enabled during this last election, when it mattered a lot.

And let’s face it: this is Facebook, the company, turning its userbase into unpaid editorial committee, where “the algorithm” (whatever black box that’s in) getting the final vote. Reddit’s existed in the same fashion for years, and well… it’s Reddit.

As well, none of this gets to the heart of the matter: Facebook provides ad targeting tools that are being used to find all kinds of marks for all kinds of con men, in a fashion similar to the way that direct mail lists were used to target the elderly back in the 1990’s with rip-off lotteries and negative option subscriptions.

As long as someone is willing to pay Facebook, they can throw any material into millions of people’s Newsfeeds, and as long as it is crafted to the viewer’s bias, you can be rewarded — even moreso than outlets that people have given explicit instruction to Facebook that they want to deal with.