The last few weeks, this has been on my mind a lot. Who decides what is wrong or right? I have no answer to that question, but this has been on my mind:
Companies have norms like no pornographic content. They ban the content and actively moderate for it.
But how about social norms? I am thinking of:
- Anti-vax misinformation
- Political opponent misinformation
- Flat earthers
Recently Amazon pulled a couple of books which promised a “cure” for autism. It was an “outraged” politician who brought it to their attention.
Spreading information like that is not against the law. No laws are being broken. This means that solutions are sought within the realm of social norms and pressure. The problem is that this process is messy and opaque. It does not scale.
We are navigating a very fine line between spreading of misinformation or hate with freedom of speech. There are no laws against misinformation (besides libel) while there are certainly laws against hate.
We invented the “worldwide megaphone” and now it is used to influence millions of people. It is very effective.
But how do we deal with that? I do not think we should look at Amazon, Facebook or Google (or any other company for that matter) to take charge.
I think this is not a private matter, but a public matter. The only thing I am certain of is that the solution begins there.
World’s most valuable company is joining the bandwagon of spreading misinformation
Apple’s weird rebuttal to Spotify’s EU complaint
Less choice is often better
FOBO & Amazon
Sorry, I’m not eating at home tonight
Subscriptions for consumables are impossibly hard
Universal law of wide adoption
Everything iterates to lowest denominator