Watching “The Great Hack” On Netflix Caused Me To Delete My Facebook. Here’s why!

“One believes things because one has been conditioned to believe them.” 
― Aldous Huxley, Brave New World


Warning!

Reading this post may disturb you and motivate you to delete your Facebook as well. If you haven’t watched the film “The Great Hack” on Netflix already, I highly recommend that you do! It brings to light how the rich and powerful have been manipulating impressionable people in our societies through social media and data mining, particularly through Facebook! Now, I can’t help but feel that Facebook is just utterly corrupt and bad for the world. However – let’s get in to the details!


The Great Hack

Spoiler Alert: Not everyone has the time to be able to devote an hour and a half to watching this documentary, but the information in this film is so important and valuable, that I am absolutely compelled to write about it. I think the word needs to be spread about the dangers of this sort of manipulative behavior with powerful people using social media, because it risks everything humanity has worked so hard to build, including our very democracies.

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So, What’s The Film About?

This documentary shows decisively how Cambridge Analytica and Facebook have been responsible for some of the polarized ideologies that we see today, including some great changes in the world, such as Trump’s successful 2016 campaign and Brexit. Cambridge Analytica worked hard to make both of these fronts a success after being hired by very wealthy conservatives to ensure that their campaigns succeeded.

Originally Cambridge Analytica’s parent company, the SCL group, was used as a propaganda machine by the US military to alter the thoughts and behaviors of the populations they were at war with during the invasions of both Iraq and Afghanistan.

Here is a quote from the SCL group’s website, “For over 25 years, we have conducted behavioural change programmes in over 60 countries & have been formally recognised for our work in defence and social change.”

How does it affect us in developed countries?

Anyways, after being used in the military to influence elections and behaviors in adverse territories for years, the company finally turned around and decided to start a smaller company to assist in elections back home. How they were able to do this is very disturbing, and Facebook had been an amazing asset to the company’s efforts overall because of the surplus of data that it offered.

Basically, the company had designed an app which would gather information from users on Facebook after the permissions were granted to use said app. When the app was granted permission, it would not only gather information on the user granting the permission, but all of their friends on Facebook as well! In this way, it mined data on every single user over a long period of time.

After it had achieved this goal, they created something akin to a personality profile for every person in the country. Then they would place each person into separate categories based on their tendencies and preferences. The people that Cambridge Analytica were most interested in, were the small group of people who were very impressionable and walking the middle line between sides in elections. They called these people “The Pursuadables”. They were often young people who had not decided for themselves yet what was right or wrong, so they were groomed for the future!

After identifying the pursuadables in a country, they would hammer them with advertisements and propaganda to push them in the direction of whatever belief they wanted them to have. For example, during the Trump campaign in the United States, impressionable users were overwhelmed with pro-Trump and anti-Hillary ads and fake propaganda. They would focus most of their energy on the states that were liable to swing one way, or another. In this fashion, American democratic results were much more easier to predict and influence!

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Was Facebook Aware of All of This?

Absolutely, in fact, they did everything in their power to cover up the scandal once it had begun to reach the public spotlight. It’s also believed that the data is still out there and being used by powerful people to tailor future propaganda campaigns for their personal benefit. Our governments are not ignorant to this fact either and it’s why Facebook recently has been fined a jaw-dropping 5 billion dollars by The Federal Trade Commission in the United States, and the legal battles are not about to end for the company.

What Can We Do About This?

The only thing that we can really do about this, is let our voices be heard that this is not acceptable! Boycott the social media outlets that are selling your data to the highest bidders, if you are able to and most importantly, educate our young humans and impressionable minds about the dangers of social media and believing everything that they see online! Not only that, but the fact that social media may soon become a threat to our personal freedom and legitimate democracies.

Children

What are your thoughts? Have you seen the documentary yet?

Have I missed anything?

Comments and thoughts down below!

 

52 thoughts on “Watching “The Great Hack” On Netflix Caused Me To Delete My Facebook. Here’s why!

  1. Here’s the ultimate problem with society:
    Truth falls on deaf ears and complacent humans.
    You think people don’t know this about Facebook?
    What’s the problem? No one thinks they can do anything about it… OR they don’t care.. And ignore reality.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Perhaps that’s true! Yet, I will never fall into that category and I will continue to speak out even if it falls on deaf ears until death separates me from my sense of justice and what’s right. This more than anything, just makes me want to get into journalism even more.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Ahhh the world’s designed to scare you in one way or another. Either with the false stuff out there or the reality behind it all. Might as well try to reach for enlightenment.

      I’m glad it’s piqued your interest! I wouldn’t have written this post if it didn’t pique mine. It’s a good watch though. Hopefully our governments are taking this matter seriously.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I watched it as well. Scary.
    I was pretty anti-Facebook already, but just the other day I decided to cave and set up an account because there was a writers’ group I wanted to join. I guess Facebook thought I was not very human-like, because they asked me to submit a photo of myself for verification. Um, okay. Then they disabled the account, but said I could appeal it by sending in an image of my photo ID. To which I say bite me.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. 🙂 I deleted my Facebook account long before the Cambridge Analytica incident.

    Also, I have no regrets of ever deleting my Facebook account.

    Now, I am heading on over to Netflix to watch “The Great Hack”.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. There are plenty of people who were conservatives before this happened and voted for Trump because they did not want 8 more years of Obama’s policies or worse by Hillary. Many voters were not thrilled with Trump, but felt that it was essential to stop the socialist train. If anything, Facebook and Twitter does the opposite of this, censoring conservative viewpoints and pushing identity politics and socialism. Public schools from pre-K on up already do what this video is claiming Cambridge did. Propaganda, thought control, punishing the students and parents who don’t submit to their absolute authority (Facebook jail?) , allowing bullying at the same time claiming to hate it, and keeping records of every child. However I do agree that dropping Facebook and all social media , or at least cutting WAY back is a smart and healthy thing. But if you really don’t like being monitored and having ads tailored to influence you, you’ll have to stop using debit cards and smart phones and store loyalty cards and Google search and Alexa, oh well never mind. Just get used to being watched and use common sense!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s true that in the digital age, it’s increasingly difficult to separate ourselves from our data collection.

      I didn’t mean to come across as picking on conservatives, especially in the American sense. (Since I’m Canadian). But in that one case in particular it was the Conservatives pushing the ball with Cambridge Analytica.

      Also – regardless of political affiliation, I think it’s bad ethical practice to manipulate the minds of our developing young and the government/education systems should be unbiased but informative!

      Anyways – Thanks for sharing! I appreciate your viewpoint. 🙂

      Like

      1. Oh boy! Well, I wouldn’t say they’re bad, but atleast in Ontario where I’m from, they’re beginning to roll back downhill thanks to our provincial government right now. X.x

        I want to live in BC, I think it’s way better over there.

        Where are you from?

        Like

      2. Well , if I tell you, I hope you won’t judge me based on stereotypes. 🙂 I’m a born and raised Texan. We are very big on freedom in our great state. Some people think we are not good at group participation. I’m a runner, btw, and I listen to a couple of running podcasts by Canadians that make me want to go there. But I guess not all of Canada is the same. I need to do my research.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t have a Netflix so I can’t watch it. I also didn’t know about what you wrote (at least not a lot) but it did not surprise me that much. The trailer is like one hell of a dystopian true story. I really want to watch it but I also find it stupid to pay just to watch a few interesting programs. 😭

    Liked by 2 people

      1. But I’m a cheapskate! 😂 No, it’s not that I don’t want to pay but they have less than 40% programs that intrigues me and for me that’s not enough. Besides, I saw it now because I have my ways 🤭

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I wish I could take credit for the avatar, but it’s not me. I like it because, for me, it denotes a wondrous curiosity, which is how I feel when I read most blogs. 😊

        My real pics are on a couple different posts on my blog, though. =)

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I haven’t watched it, but yes, I have always been kind of anti-Facebook. I’ve read the same kinds of things about Google as well which is why I started using Duck Duck Go as a search engine. I also plan to change my email provider from gmail to something else–not sure what yet.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Seen it, but since they had special access to Brittany Kaiser the doc lacks information about Christopher Wylie, Robert Mercer, Steve Bannon, and SCL founder Oakes. Trump is just an effect of their fb manipulation like the Nazis back in the parliament of Germany. If you want to get rid of social media monitoring, micro-targeting, and propaganda it’s a good start to delete fb, but Gmail, Instagram, iPhones, Google search, Google Android, their Chrome browser and WhatsApp are the next steps. At least it’s a healthy thing to do…
    https://gfkdsgn.wordpress.com/2018/09/05/anti-social-media/5/

    Liked by 2 people

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