Personalization by way of automation

Interesting peek at what happens when personalization by way of automation and algorithms takes a dark turn.

“Unlike tabloid television, algorithmic personalization does not announce that it’s pandering to base interests. When sensationalized reports about violence against children are on TV, I can change the channel — an act that is harder to do on the Internet when seemingly ‘neutral’ spaces, like Yahoo’s homepage, leave no tell-tale trace of manipulation.  You can’t change the channel when you don’t know you’re watching the program.”

Another argument in favor of the human curator (read: editor) as we stumble through sorting out what can be programmed, what should never be, and where the middle ground is.

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