Before I got distracted with Chat GPT, we were talking about how Facebook is simple enough for Grandma to use it but it comes with the Faustian bargain that every single interaction and every single detail about every interaction is the property of Facebook.
Some of the things they keep track of:
- What time the message was sent.
- How long has it been since the last one.
- What’s the GPS of each participant?
- What’s the device identification?
- What wi-fi are they connected to?
- What messages were typed but not sent?
- How does all this compare to the last 6 months of behavior?
- Where do they go after closing the conversation?
- How often do they go there?
All this information surrounding the “real data” of the message you sent to Grandma is called “meta-data.” Weirdly, this is the most valuable part about you. It’s your patterns of behavior.
These patterns reveal your preferences. Your relationships. Your mood. Your political affiliations.
Given long enough and enough interactions, they can predict future behavior & identify deviations from normal wayyyyyy before you might think possible.
That’s what makes it so valuable to advertisers.
So far you’re feeding the machine that hijacks your dopamine receptors because that machine hits your dopamine receptors.
It’s a vicious cycle that leverages your “monkey needs to belong to the group” braincells to keep you addicted to the appearance of community when really you’re interacting with the shadow puppets of profiles that Facebook’s ‘algorithm’ decides you should see.
Because these are the profiles you’ll engage with the most; not the people you want to see the most.
Your intentions and the plans that the platform have for you are not the same thing.
And Facebook owns all the cards. Tomorrow they can shut you out of your account, and you’ll never have any of the conversations or photos or posts or comments or memories or anything.
Your life is their data; not yours.
All because it’s too hard to do it any other way, and nobody has figured out a better way to do it.
Or have they?