I never actually thought of the information I was looking at on the search results page every time I “googled” something. Each time I would search for something, I would always assume that everybody else’s page looked the same as mine. However, after reading Eli Pariser’s The Filter Bubble, and having had the chance to discuss and reflect upon what I learned in class during the group that had presented this book to us has made me look at the same search engine and the results page in a completely different way.
I never wondered how the searches to my keywords were performed or why the advertisements on my page’s side bar menu appeared to match what I had searched. I had just done what I had to do and moved on with a new search or navigated another site for either research or entertainment. But as Pariser and the group explained, the fact that each of our searches are constantly logged and arranged to our own personalities is fascinating.
Even though the argument of the book indicates that we become stuck in this bubble that filters out all “unneeded” information based on predictions Google has made about us, which makes it easier for Google to “hide” information from you, I still feel that as students of media or as citizens of the world it is up to us to actively take part in the information we consume. We don’t necessarily have to use the same computer to search for something, we can look on with a friend and make comparisons of his or her search page with our, we can even delete our search and cookies that the site embeds in our computers to log our information even after we are logged out of the site.
Even though this is the case, I don’t necessarily think the idea of us existing in sole a filtered bubble is a big deal although it is our job to be media literate and to be able to use our literacy to spread our knowledge, after all we are now the producers of the content and can directly influence change if we developed a personal value for it first.