Cookies, Facebook, Bears and Russia: Welcome to McCarthy era 2.0

I don’t want to defend nobody, this is not a column for that kind of choices. However, we need to be clear, what is happening most of the time is how did we choose to see the decision of different people handling biggest corporations or massive governments? And in both cases, the answer is the same, they are or they are influenced by their past. Donald Trump, President of the United States and Mark Zuckerberg, Philanthropist and CEO shared mindsets of Managers in private enterprises. It could be selling advertising or beautiful hotels to spend your holidays. Both took decisions inspired in what a businessman would do and when that is comprehensible in Zuckerberg’s position, when Donald Trump tried to do it everybody goes “crazy”.

I don’t support all his decisions but when I saw the way he expressed his opinions or beliefs on Twitter, even against any PR expert advice, what I saw it is exactly what you could find in the majority of experts in management. They believe they are right, no matter how wrong they had acted. Even though, the influence of Russian hackers in the American election is a reality and a warning for The United States and for any country, where users read their news online.

The cookies don’t only crumble, they let them tracked you

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Cookies are one of my favourites desserts since I was a child. Furthermore, my mom used to laugh at my reaction each time I found them on the table. My grandmother used to buy a dozen each time she went to the supermarket and it looks like in the digital era I am not the only one with a deep interest in cookies. Companies from Facebook to Google used them all the time to track your behaviour online and interests so, the problem is how companies hacked the system of private enterprises to determine new strategies to manipulate, influence and control your behaviour. This is not new. Different communication schools had been taking advantage of Psychological studies to understand your behaviour and try to modify it. However, what could be the measures taken when they don’t use real facts to change your opinions but lies published as they were real.

It is true that Facebook case is similar to what other companies like Equifax, Uber, among others had experience. However, in Facebook case the most strange is how the information was used by a third company Cambridge Analytica to influence voters in an Election. Assuming that any company try to use that kind of information to understand better their users and selling them more products, ideas, values or another commercial element, how do Governments should measure responsibility when a company could affect Political decisions in high levels or positions?

We are accepting that anything is justified when we should win an election without a second thought, in that context we see one more time not a vision of Politics, as I am used to see in different messages around me thinking in the Greatness good for everyone, but more in something from the private sphere when prevail over your opponent is the more important thing. In that context, the use of resources as cookies to manipulate your vote is seen as a right strategy, however, users still had questions and doubts about privacy and how, sometimes, the companies promised something they cannot achieve in their privacy agreement before you start using any platform.

NEXT:

What is behind all the noise of Russian presence as a risk in Western democracies?

 

Published by

rossana26

Journalist. Student of Global Media Communication. Interested in Politics, Economy, Social Media, Technology. Feminist. Like walking, talking and swimming.

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