Cake
  • Log In
  • Sign Up
    • There hasn’t been a definitive link between teen suicide rates and social media, but concerns over cyber bullying and self-harm have caused psychiatrists in the U.K. to demand that social media companies turn over their data for research.

      The college, which represents psychiatrists working in the UK, has called on the government to compel Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to hand over data to academics on the type of material users are viewing, and the amount of time they are spending on the platforms. Although most children and young people will be able to benefit from technology without negative effects, some may be vulnerable to compulsive use and potential harms, the report says. The college said any data shared would be anonymized 

    • .. I think so. It comes down to what is Facebook and other sites deliberately doing that causes harm and what are they failing to do that causes harm. These platforms have Big Data, meaning that you have millions of data points instead of a college survey of a thousand students. This could produce extremely important to society insights, which could put guardrails on the use of technology.

    • They invest enormously in researching exactly what makes humans "tick", so they can profit. Hence they will not give that away for noble causes. And the reason why is because they're exploiting weaknesses, not just just that, creating them.

    • UK to introduce world first online safety laws. The Government today unveiled tough new measures to ensure the UK is the safest place in the world to be online.

      Under the new regulations, “Social media firms must abide by mandatory ‘duty of care’ to protect users and could face heavy fines if they fail to deliver.”

      A cynic would ask how strong the enforcement mechanism is if companies fail to comply.

      Further details on the new law are here. 👇


      I think there is a growing consumer demand for better regulation of technology that affects us. Interestingly, Google’s CEO is now calling for regulation of an even more invasive and potentially harmful technology:

    • there is a growing consumer demand for better regulation of technology that affects us.

      The problem here is the term "consumer"and market principles do not apply like with a solid product or an up front paid software. Majority of online users have no idea what exactly they are doing when using these sites, providing all the data, most people would simply shrug "what have I got to hide?".. Pair that with the fact they're using a "free" service, no one has any expectation that they can actually demand anything, and frankly until it's defined in legal terms what online data harvesting services can or cannot do, and how, very little will change for the better. If someone reads the fine print on most major social web sites, it's a mumbo jumbo, confusing, extremely lengthy and convoluted blurb, which pretty much sums up as - you use our service - we own you. Just think what happened with photobucket who suddenly ransomed years of data, all of each user's images links, and that was a relatively benign racketeering, comparing to others. It's very generous for Google to say they won't use theirs for weapons, but if push comes to shove I do not believe that is black and white, at all either.

    • Yes. Also, remember what we got last time FB was sharing its data? Cambridge Analytica.

      I was just going to say that.

      Do we really know that social media is responsible for the increase in teen suicide? A specific part of social media? I wouldn't think its YouTube.

      Or is it like how afraid our parents in America were of TV and rock music ruining kids? I don't hear that talked about much anymore. There is evidence that our parents were right about TV, but it was Fox News and it may have eaten their brains, not the brains of youth.

      After all, the suicide rate is by far the highest among Fox's audience: middle age and older white men. According to The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention:

      • In 2017, men died by suicide 3.5x more often than women.
      • White males accounted for 70% of suicide deaths in 2017.
      • The rate of suicide is highest in middle-age white men in particular.

    • I think you lost me on the connection with Fox News. You said there is evidence that your parents were right about tv, but that only applies to Fox News? 🤷🏻‍♀️

    • Yes, my belief is my generation’s parents were right about the dark side of television, but it didn’t manifest the way they foresaw and they were taken by surprise.

      I don’t think there is much debate about the good and fun TV can bring through shows like Planet Earth, coverage of the Olympics and hundreds of other great shows. But there is a huge debate on what’s most toxic to our democracy and mental health, with Facebook and Fox News usually near the top of the concerns.

      For my parents’ generation, I don’t think they foresaw the vector being news. Their generation learned TV news from Walter Cronkite, the most trusted man in America. I don’t think they were prepared for Roger Ailes.

    • Ah ok. Thanks for clarifying.

      I will actually disagree with you on Planet Earth, though. It’s spectacular and we own it and have enjoyed it, but I do believe even shows like that have a very real drawback that many people may not realize or compensate for.

      There is a real value in seeing and appreciating nature’s beauty, but it traditionally has required effort, patience, and careful observation to attain. You’d have to hike, cultivate, or at the very least wait. Now, you can instantly see in richer-than-life color in a few minutes far more than you can hope to ever see in a lifetime of spending time outside.

      I love that the footage is captured and preserved before the species and environment change, and certainly it’s jaw-dropping and entertaining, but I don’t find the same satisfying connection with nature I get when I’m actually in nature. Yet, if I spend much time watching those shows, I find myself underwhelmed outside by the very things I previously found to be spectacular, simply because they don’t compare to the best of the best that modern resources can offer up.

      I wonder if something similar in many aspects of life is contributing to our feeling of disconnectedness and discontent in a world of lightning fast “connection.” After all, it’s easier to like your kitchen before you’re confronted with thousands of mind-blowingly awesome kitchens from a simple search online.

    • That’s a fascinating perspective. Thank you.

      On the possible link between teens, suicide, and social media, I remember driving and listening to Terry Gross interview a woman who researches teen sex and the role of pornography. It’s an awful situation because teens are getting their sex education from porn sites, which are so easily accessible, and the way it’s portrayed on them is not like real life and it’s devoid of real affection.

    • I wonder if something similar in many aspects of life is contributing to our feeling of disconnectedness and discontent in a world of lightning fast “connection.” After all, it’s easier to like your kitchen before you’re confronted with thousands of mind-blowingly awesome kitchens from a simple search online.

      I feel like that is an issue worthy of its own conversation. If you want to start something I’d be interested in participating.

      🙏🙏🙏🙏