Your personal internet
The internet was to give us all an endless stream of information. But that is quickly changing. We are having to deal with more and more ‘personalized’ websites and search results showing us what we already know. American author Eli Pariser warns us about this in his new book The Filter Bubble. He explains how we think we understand the world around us, but how we actually live in a bubble. Because of the net we live our lives in parallel universes In our own lonesome ghetto’s. And the worst part is most of us don’t even know. Of course the main motive for our personal internet is money. Since 4 December 2009 Google has been studying our search history and adjusting the results we are shown. Try searching for the same keyword as a friend and see how both your results will come out different. We all have our own Google. It is not just the search engine who formats their site around your surfing behavior. Also sites like Facebook, Amazon, YouTube and newssites do. Yes even your news is screened and adjusted to your preferences and popularity online. So less popular but maybe very important news might never make it to your screen. If you don’t specifically look for a new vantage point the online media will only reinforce your ideas and bring you what you have always been looking at. The Filter Bubble shows our world getting smaller and smaller because sites get smarter at understanding everything about us. At some point you don’t know there is a world outside of your ‘You-loop’ of your favorite series, funny movies and the live of your Facebook friends. And if you think that the real world will give you a real escape, you’re wrong. In Tokyo the subways have been introduced to personalized billboards that can detect the age, sex etc from the passerby. It won’t be too long before the real and digital world combine forces even more thanks to augmented reality. Online dating will take on a whole new meaning. Why step up to someone in a bar that might look nice if your profile suggests otherwise.