Algorithms, Journalism and Democracy
Algorithms influence almost all the information you consume, from news stories, to social media updates, to movies, books, and television programs. Algorithms fuel the marketplace of ideas and ultimately grease the wheels of democracy. Algorithms can surface truths that improve our understanding of the world. And algorithms can perpetuate false information or distort the truth. In this session we will look at some surprising ways that algorithms make life better and some ways that algorithms distort our perception of reality. Understanding how algorithms control and manipulate your world is key to becoming truly literate in today's world.
Additional Supporting Materials
- How do algorithms fuel the marketplace of ideas?
- What bias is behind algorithms and how can consumers detect that bias and correct for it?
- Most algorithms are controlled by private interests. It's impossible to know for sure how programmers are tweaking the biases. How can citizens hold companies like Facebook or Google or even the New York Times accountable for the way their algorithms influence democracies worldwide?
- What can private companies do to make their algorithms more transparent?
- What can I do to escape the influence of algorithms?
Kelly McBride The Poynter Institute
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