By Arjun Walia, Collective Evolution
As you’ve probably already heard, Facebook is getting a lot of bad press lately, for multiple reasons. Sometimes it seems we’re coming down too hard on Facebook, because to be honest, it’s been a great tool for connecting people worldwide, and also a great tool to share free and open information away from the influence of corporate and government influence.
Things were going great in this regard, until the entire ‘fake news’ epidemic hit causing Facebook to change their algorithm, and ultimately decide what information people have the right to access, without letting them examine sources and make up their own minds. That being said, there may be a bigger entity behind Facebook influencing its decisions, like the Federal Communication Commission, but who knows.
Censorship on information is at an all time high, and that’s no longer a secret. These days, we require more transparency, more information and more education with regards to teaching people how to think critically. We do not need more censorship, nor government/corporate authorities deciding for us what is real, what is fake, what is credible and what is not credible. We can do that ourselves.
At the end of the day, the biggest concern the citizenry seems to be having is with regards to their privacy. It’s no secret today that privacy doesn’t really exist, and intelligence agencies along with communications corporations have been collecting data on the global population through various means, one of them probably being Facebook. This type of data collecting and surveillance is justified by stating that it preserves national security, among other things.
As Edward Snowden (NSA whistle-blower) recently tweeted:
“Facebook makes their money by exploiting and selling intimate details about the private lives of millions, far beyond the scant details you voluntarily post. They are not victims, they are accomplices…Businesses that make money by collecting and selling detailed records of private lives were once plainly described as “surveillance companies.” Their rebranding as “social media” is the most successful deception since the Department of War became the Department of Defense.”
That being said, it’s not like this was secret information. It’s similar to the Snowden leaks, not many people out there were labelling mass surveillance as a ‘conspiracy theory,’ there was already enough information and evidence out there to make an educated guess about it. We’ve seen a similar thing happen with the UFO phenomenon, with its recent official disclosure by dozens of governments, along with the most recent footage released to the public by the Pentagon, we now know they are real, but many people knew beforehand. Why did they know before hand?
Because we don’t need the government/mainstream media to tell is something is true, before it’s considered true by the masses, we can think for ourselves. That’s an important point to remember, and it’s also important to keep in mind that information has been manipulated by mainstream media with regards to real events, for years.
I know it’s a different subject matter, but it’s a great example which is why I used it.
It’s also important to mention that we do have the opportunity to protect ourselves from social media data collection (see below), but at the same time, is it really necessary for a company to collect so much data on the user? Well, from a profit standpoint it is, because they sell this information to other companies. By collecting data, these corporations can see what we’re interested in, what we talk about, what sites we frequent, and more. It makes it really easy for them to target us and influence what we’re able to see, and what we’re not able to see, and target specific advertisements and information to us.
Furthermore, it was recently revealed that UK data analytics corporation, Cambridge Analytics, gained access the personal information of more than 50 million Facebook users in 2014, largely without their consent.
“Cambridge Analytica, a data analytics company, got access to more than 50 million Facebook users’ data in 2014. The data was overwhelmingly collected, shared, and stored without user consent. The scale of this violation of user privacy reflects how Facebook’s terms of service and API were structured at the time. Make no mistake: this was not a data breach. This was exactly how Facebook’s infrastructure was designed to work.” (source)
Chamath Palihapitiya, the vice-president for user growth at Facebook prior to leaving the company in 2011, said, “The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops that we created are destroying how society works. . . . No civil discourse, no cooperation, misinformation, mistruth.” You can read more about that here.
So not only are we being watched, we’re also being manipulated in a sense.
Facebook would be great without the data collection, as this type of data collection is completely unnecessary the same way that collecting mass amounts of info and watching the masses via NSA-type surveillance is not necessary, but we’re told it is.
I like to use the example of terrorism as well. If terrorism is state sponsored and a creation of the western military alliance, then how is that used as a justification for surveillance program, especially of the ‘war on terror’ is, “completely fabricated” and based on “false premises,” according to Canadian economist Dr. Michel Chossudovsky.
You can read more about that here.
At the end of the day, there seems to be some sort of entity, perhaps what’s now known as the ‘Deep State,’ pushing for an authoritarian type of human experience. America’s ruling elite’s ideology has long been neoliberalism and neoconservatism.
“Unlike traditional liberalism and conservatism, neoliberalism and neoconservatism are not opposites. Neoliberalism is just another name for transnational globalization, while neoconservatism is nothing other than the U.S.-dominated global empire project. They work together, two inhuman, anti-human processes that ensure a tiny minority of people control and own all the water, minerals, drugs, GM foods, and everything else worth owning in this world. Hillary Clinton, as the ultimate representative of such an agenda, received unwavering support from all segments of that establishment, certainly from the media. Trump, on the other hand, was vilified.” – Richard Dolan
I believe surveillance is one of multiple aspects of this agenda.
How To Change Your Facebook Settings To Opt Out of Platform API Sharing
Thanks to the Electronic Frontier Foundation for the information.
Log into Facebook and visit the App Settings page (or go there manually via the Settings Menu > Apps ).
From there, click the “Edit” button under “Apps, Websites and Plugins.” Click “Disable Platform.”
If you don’t want to disable the platform, click “Edit” under “Apps Others Use.” Then uncheck the types of information that you don’t want others’ apps to be able to access.
Based on my research into surveillance done by governments and intelligence agencies, the reasons never really seem to make sense. As mentioned above, with multiple examples, some of the reasons might even be completely fabricated. So, I encourage others to ask themselves, why? Why all of this data collection? Has Facebook, like most other high profiting corporations, simply collected data so they can sell it to other companies for huge amounts of money? Has the government intervened and used Facebook as another data collection method for their own purposes? Do they want to keep tabs on somebody that threatens the global elite’s plans in any sort of way? Or is it simply, again, all about money and finding out what we are all individually interested in? We could go on and on and speculate, but the bottom line is, it’s not a nice feeling to know that everything you say and do is recorded and stored somewhere in a massive data base. It’s not right, it infringes on multiple human rights, and it seems to be completely unnecessary and a tool used by the global elite for their own selfish purposes.
One thing is for certain, the world is changing, and we’re starting to finally acknowledge what’s going on behind the scenes instead of branding facts as ‘conspiracy’ theories simply because they go against our own belief systems.
Ultimately, we are the users of these platforms, and they are detrimental in several ways as they are helpful and positive. It’s up to you to make the decision whether you want to continue to use them.