15 minutes in so far and my initial reaction is "oh come on, can we just not with the Cambridge Analytica villain-hagiography?" (1/probably a lot)
...Folks, just because the sales guy tells you his beans are magic doesn't mean you have to believe him.
Wylie explains how they used a Facebook app to build psychological profiles of every voter.
Left unsaid: whether these profiles were actually any good. (How much more can you predict from them than from the voter file?)
Sure, okay, sounds bad. But several BILLION dollars were spent on ads in the 2016 election. This is different *how?*
I respect the activist tactics Carroll used against CA. Pretty cool, very creative.
But Carroll begins from the *premise* that propaganda works. (...)
And his tactics were designed to reveal that CA (1) had a lot of data and (2) that's creepy.
Both can be true without helping to promote CA's own marketing hype.
There is an important difference between "they broke laws" and "they were devastatingly effective."
Former yes, latter probably not.
...Dude, that's just online marketing.
That's a dramatic but empty phrase. All websites run A/B tests. All of them.
Folks, this is standard practice in every political campaign, dating back several decades. I was taught this stuff in 1997-1998. Commonplace.
...Look, there's a ton to criticize FB for, but this shouldn't be on the list.
There is a ton wrong with Facebook's business model, and with Facebook's business practices. This shouldn't be part of the grievance list.
CA made some bold claims about its efficacy to prospective clients.
It's a strong rhetorical device, but it's also hollow.
DoD and other military entities have shown an interest in advances in propaganda techniques. No surprise.
That doesn't make your FB data the new bullets, folks.
The video catches him overclaiming the company's role in the Trump campaign, and then boasting about illegal activity.
The movie leaves the former impression.
Bottom-line: if you want to prop up Cambridge Analytica as an object lesson in datafication, this movie is a good vessel for doing so.
And that's not how we should ever treat marketing materials. (...)
And the answer there is that it isn't particularly different.
Did the Remain campaign target persuadable voters as well? They sure better have!
The Hillary campaign had a massive data operation. They just didn't prioritize Facebook.
(self-plug: I've written about this elsewhere civichall.org/civicist/digit… )
The direct effects of digital propaganda are small and short-term. Particularly in elections that are already flooded with advertising.
There needs to be room for a 3rd option. CA was ineffective. Data markets need to be regulated.