Group 5 // Section 1 // 11:00 a.m. // Conspiracy Theories

Panel: Ivy, Erica, Joanna

Readings:

https://www.bennettinstitute.cam.ac.uk/blog/conspiracy-theory-vs-free-speech-should-we-regulat/

https://theconversation.com/conspiracy-theories-fuel-prejudice-towards-minority-groups-113508

Online Discussion Questions:

Q1: Have you ever heard any conspiracy theories?

Q2: In recent news politicians have been accused of using conspiracy theories to manipulate the public. What has been your experience with news sources using conspiracy theories to manipulate public opinion?

Q3: Do you think something should be done about the spread of conspiracy theories?

In Class Discussion Questions:

Q1: How do conspiracy theories help fuel prejudice towards minority groups?

Q2: Should conspiracy theories be regulated online? If so, how should online sources implement regulations to compact conspiracy theories?

Q3: Do you think that some conspiracy theories are geared towards a particular group of minorities? If so, what are some ramifications of such theories?

Counter technology:
https://www.poynter.org/fact-checking/2018/four-major-tech-companies-take-new-steps-to-combat-fake-news/

Group 5 // Section 2 // 3:30pm // Clickbait

Facebook Questions:

Q1: List 2-3 sites where you have seen clickbait.

Q2: What does clickbait normally look like and how easily is it identified?

Q3: Share an example of clickbait and explain why you think it’s clickbait.

Articles:

Article #1: Don’t Click on Clickbait (Mill Valley News, March 2019)

Article #2 What is ‘Clickbait’ and Should we use it? (Cariad Marketing, Aug 2018)

Discussion Questions:

Q1: Why do we click on clickbait? How does it draw so much attention?

Q2: Could clickbait be used as a good thing? How about bad things?

Counter Tech: Browser Plugins

Group 4 // Section 2 // 3:30 pm // Algorithmic Economy

Panel Members: Elizabeth, Nicole, Gianna, Angel

Discussion Questions:

  1. Do you think that certain sites have more personalized algorithms than others? If so, what sites?
  2. Do you think that because of certain algorithms with ads it causes you to look up things or purchase things that you’ve never seen/tried before?
  3. Have you ever come across something on any sites that allows you to have any sort of input into the ads you see?
  4. Do you think that algorithms on certain sites are due to people wanting to make money?
  5. Have you ever looked into why certain things are on your feed? If so, did you come across any useful information?

Readings:

“11 Essential Algorithms That Make The Internet Work” (Business Insider, 2011)

“Youtube’s clickbait problem has reaches new height” (Polygon, 2018)

Counter-Technology:

The instructions for our counter-technology is here.

Group 4 // Section 1 // 11:00 a.m. // Clickbait

Panel Members: Megan, Sandra, Lewis

Online Discussion Questions:

  1. Do you actually learn something from clickbait? Is it worth clicking?
  2. Are there benefits to clickbait? Negatives?

Readings:

In-Class Discussion Questions:

  1. How have you experienced “attention merchants” (product advertisements) at schools?
  2. The article discusses two curiosity gaps.  Which one do you relate the most to?
  3. What kind of headlines feed your curiosity gap the most? (ex: politics, fashion trends, etc.)

Counter Technology:

Easy AdBlocker Search Manager

The Best (and Worst) Ad Blockers 

  1. AdBlock
  2. CyberSec by NordVPN
  3. CleanWeb by Surfshark
  4. Opera
  5. Firefox
  6. CyberGhost
  7. R.O.B.E.R.T. by Windscribe
  8. Google Chrome
  9. AdLock
  10. Microsoft Edge

Group 3 // Section 1 // 11:00 a.m. // Algorithmic Bias


Panel members: Brielle, Julia, Kaitlyn

Online Discussion Questions:

Q1: Have you seen algorithmic bias in your life? What did you think when you dealt with it?
Q2: What would you say your algorithm filter is on social media?
Q3: Where do you most see algorithmic bias take place? Can you think of any specific examples to share?

In class Discussion Questions:

Q1: Was algorithmic bias as prevalent as you thought? Why or why not? Do you think something needs to be done to fix this problem?
Q2: What are your thoughts about a white mask being recognized instead of a bare face?
Q3: In which ways do you think algorithmic bias can be damaging or dangerous?

Readings:

The Real Reason Tech Struggles With Algorithmic Bias” (Wired, February 2019)

Ghosts in the Machine” (NOVA, October 2017)


Counter Technology:The Coded Gaze” (Algorithmic Justice League)