Facebook Is a Parasite… Even The New York Times Is Admitting It


The Times is only on the story to hurt Donald Trump of course, but they have nonetheless brought it up. And most of the commenters at The Times’ website saw through the ridiculous Blue/Red sideshow. They ignored it and got to the real issues. Here’s one snip:

Can we just say it? Facebook is evil. Its entire raison d’etre is the balkanization of communities and nations in pursuit of financial profit. It monetizes and sells the most intimate details of private human relationships.

Here’s another that gets to the core:

Power in 21st Century comes from influencing people’s choices without their knowledge. Age of mass customization has arrived with weaponizing these techniques.

What the Article Says

In brief, the article notes that Republican donors, through the efforts of someone with connections to the Obama campaigns, hired a company called Cambridge Analytica to produce psychological (“psychographic”) profiles of millions of Americans, in hopes of “using personality profiling to shift America’s culture.”

To do this they obtained detailed Facebook data on 50 million people. And used it.

From there the article descends into minutia. (How they got the Facebook data, whether a Russian person worked at Cambridge Analytica, and so on.)

What the Article Didn’t Say

What The Times left out was that the Hillary campaign did almost the same thing and with the enthusiastic support of Google. And make no mistake, this is the new model for all politicians, and they will not give it up. They’ll just be more careful in the future… that is, if The Times article is of lasting effect. (You can be sure that Facebook will be steering its billion-plus users away from the subject.)

The Parasite Model

Facebook, Google, and all the free services operate as parasites. So do the “discount with card” groceries, etc., etc. All of these operations are pushing you to give them your information, which they will use to manipulate you. And when they’re done manipulating you, they’ll sell your information to others, so they can do the same.

Regardless of how creatively this is justified, it is plainly parasitic.

You Don’t Think the Spies Are in on This?

I wrote a short book with Jonathan Logan explaining how and why the spy agencies are all over this. And as we noted in it, both Google and Facebook have the ability to deeply surveil and manipulate billions of people at once. Any spies who didn’t use this would be abject fools.

Where This Ends Up

Again to be very brief (see the book linked above for details), this ends up where the Chinese are already taking it: rewarding “good” citizens and punishing “bad” citizens.

However covered up and prettied up, this is what serves rulers, and this is what they’ll do to servile people… however long they can.

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Paul Rosenberg

5 thoughts on “Facebook Is a Parasite… Even The New York Times Is Admitting It”

    1. Fair enough, the post was too brief. Here’s something a little bit better:
      Facebook attaches itself to its hosts surreptitiously (talk to your friends for free) and quietly sucks its sustenance from them.

      1. Hmm … that’s the thing. There is no “surreptitious attachment.”
        The deal may not seem like a good deal to those who place a high value on privacy, etc., but at this point pretty much everyone knows the deal with “free” Internet services:
        The user is the product, not the customer.
        The customer is the companies wanting to use your personal information to sell stuff to you, etc.
        But the user IS compensated for the use of that information. It’s just a question of whether or not the deal is a good one.
        For me, it is. Based on the things I do and how I do them, Google’s ChromeOS is ideal. The hardware is cheap, the software is “free,” and the nature of much of my work is that the information in question would be out there for the harvesting even if I didn’t take the deal. If want a better situation vis a vis communications security, I’ll encrypt stuff off-line, either on an air-gapped computer or manually using a one time pad, before moving it to a Google-connected device for transmission.
        For others, the deal may suck. In which case, they shouldn’t take it.

        1. Most users think only that they’ll be subjected to ads.
          But I don’t want to belabor the point. If you disagree, no prob.

  1. concerning the grocery card, years back I figured out that the money the grocery chain had willfully given up to me was in the neighborhood of $3,000.00 dollars. Why give up profits and sales? So I figured they were selling my data (for a lot more than that), and since they weren’t offering me a cut of it, I got new cards from each, but refused to enter my name or number on the card. I started playing a game with everyone I knew or met. I would convince them to trade my grocery card for theirs. I’ve done this too many times to count. You still get the discount, but the info is worthless.

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