Home / Science | Technology / As David Letterman’s first Netflix visitor, Barack Obama warns against the ‘bubble’ of social media

As David Letterman’s first Netflix visitor, Barack Obama warns against the ‘bubble’ of social media


David Letterman appears to be taking the identify of his new Netflix display very severely: On the very first episode of My Next Guest Needs No Introduction With David Letterman, he’s joined by way of former U.S. President Barack Obama.

The episode has masses of humorous moments, like Obama ribbing Letterman about his just about Biblical beard. But they duvet substantive political subjects, too — no longer simply all through the on-stage interview, but additionally in Letterman’s stroll throughout Selma’s well-known Edmund Pettus Bridge with Congressman John Lewis.

In reality, Letterman appears to be treating the new display as a chance to transport a bit of bit clear of his standard sardonic taste and be offering extra intensity and seriousness. He ended the interview by way of telling Obama, “Without a question of a doubt, you are the first president I really and truly respect.”

On the tech entrance, Obama repeated some of the issues he made in a up to date BBC interview with the U.Ok.’s Prince Harry. After being requested about threats to our democracy, Obama warned against “getting all your information off algorithms being sent through a phone.”

He famous that he owes a lot of his personal political good fortune to social media, which helped him construct “what ended up being the most effective political campaign, probably in modern political history.” So he to start with had “a very optimistic feeling” about the era, however he mentioned, “I think that what we missed was the degree to which people who are in power … special interests, foreign governments, etc., can in fact manipulate that and propagandize.”

Obama then recounted a science experiment (“not a big scientific experiment, but just an experiment that somebody did during the revolution that was taking place in Egypt”) the place a liberal, a conservative and a “quote-unquote moderate” had been requested to seek for “Egypt,” and Google introduced each and every of them with very other effects.

“Whatever your biases were, that’s where you were being sent, and that gets more reinforced over time,” he mentioned. “That’s what’s happening with these Facebook pages where more and more people are getting their news from. At a certain point you just live in a bubble, and that’s part of why our politics is so polarized right now.”

Appropriately for a political candidate who was once so carefully related to hope, Obama additionally introduced some optimism: “I think it is a solvable problem, but I think it’s one that we have to spend a lot of time thinking about.”

It turns out that Facebook and the different large platforms are no less than seeking to cope with the factor. Yesterday, as an example, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg introduced that the social community can be prioritizing “meaningful social interactions” over information and writer content material.

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