From our special correspondent, Wessex Man:
The New York Times tells us:
Debates over privacy have plagued Facebook for years. But the news that Cambridge Analytica, a political data firm that worked on President Trump’s 2016 campaign, was able to gain access to private data through the social network has sparked an unusually strong reaction among its users.
The hashtag #DeleteFacebook appeared more than 10,000 times on Twitter within a two-hour period on Wednesday, according to the analytics service ExportTweet. On Tuesday, it was mentioned 40,398 times, according to the analytics service Digimind.
The MSM is currently obsessed with Trump and all the machinery that got him elected. There are 2 drivers behind this obsession. Trump isn’t their sort of person. He’s boorish, unrefined and opposes many of their values. Historically, they’ve been able to filter people like Trump out, so this shouldn’t have happened. To the MSM, the only way this could have happened was by cheating, rather than innovative use of technology to bypass the MSM. Secondly, there is a relentless desire of all journalists to be the next Woodward and Bernstein and get a Watergate, even when it’s likely to be a false trail.
They also, to some extent, would like to harm social media. This is hardly surprising as they’re in competition and people sharing garbage on Facebook and Twitter is crowding out people printing garbage in newspapers and on TV. Also, they perceive social media as enabling various people that they disapprove of, like Trump and Jordan Peterson thus they scaremonger about them.
I visited Facebook today just to catch up with friends and family and no-one has left. No-one is complaining about what is going on. When the NYT talk of an unusually strong reaction, it’s worth mentioning that there are 2.2bn active users on Facebook. Twitter hashtags and Facebook users don’t exactly correlate. Some people aren’t on both, some people might leave without tweeting, but on the other hand, some of those might be people using it to say that they left years ago, or suggesting others leave, or even spambots. But I certainly don’t think a ratio of 1/50000th of the user base is a “strong reaction”.
Apart from the fact that the story itself is unravelling – Obama did similar things, Cambridge Analytica didn’t actually do much for Trump – I think what the MSM have missed is how little most people care about Facebook privacy. People avoid posting nude selfies or bank account details. It’s reviews of movies or local pubs, photos out with the kids. They care very little about that stuff, so how much is anyone going to care about an anonymous survey going from one marketing company to another?