Just looking at Netflix between my dad’s and mine profiles on the same account we have similar but yet quite different tastes in movies and TV shows. But looking at it in a bit more detail I noticed that the pictures for some of the same movies and shows are different or are updated at a different time. The categories that get used to show off the areas that are watched the most are different between the two profiles. Just from looking at this limited amount of information I can tell that Netflix is trying to place my dad in a bubble of documentaries, British television shows and conspiracy shows and movies. On the other side, I have more of the cartoons and anime and get a very broad scope of shows and movies recommended to me but non-to very few of the shows and movies of my dad.

By thinking of this and what Google or any other search engine might do in the way of a filter bubble is intriguing but also worry some since we would have no idea on our own of knowing what news or interesting topics we are missing out on. Eli Pariser talks about this on a TED talk, and how we as a society are kind of repeating history from the 1915s with the switching over from people monitoring and giving us articles on the Internet to everything being controlled by algorithms.

By having a filter bubble it can become harder to find that elusive needle in the haystack that is the worlds largest haystack (9 algorithms). According to the TED talks Eli Pariser Google uses algorithms that can recognize you even though you may be using a different computer or account on the same computer as well as where you are. This also gets mentioned in 9 algorithms that changed the future since we can use the same algorithms from pattern recognition in the searching the web.

This field of filter bubbles is using big data and data mining to predict what we will be interested in, in the near future. The field of filter bubbles is new-ish and we are quickly realizing (those who are big in the field) how closed off the new algorithms are making our searches more like tunnel vision. They (the engineers at Google and other similar sites) are kind of using data mining to predict what as a population and individuals what we might search for or like to see and not really letting us expand our horizons. When I first learned about the Internet in school we were taught that people were slowly seeing it take over the books and that it might be the new way to help people expand their horizons. It also was suppose to help us connect more easily to people across the globe or just somewhere else in the country. With the filter bubbles popping up across the Internet on different search engines and social media sites and in general across the web such as Hulu and Netflix it makes it much harder to expand our own horizons with new material and ideas.

Having done it before, if you decide to not update your location on social media or your devices a lot of the time the default location comes up or the last place they know you were at. This also will change the ads and search results that you receive for a lot of things. This can also be a bit frustrating when trying to find a location and the wrong city keeps getting searched. But this is still a unique way that I have found to try and escape the filter bubbles that exist.


Pariser, Eli. “Transcript of “Beware Online “filter Bubbles””” Eli Pariser: Beware Online “filter Bubbles” TED Conferences, LLC, Mar. 2011. Web. 17 Oct. 2016.
MacCormick, John. Nine Algorithms That Changed the Future: The Ingenious Ideas That Drive Today’s Computers. Princeton: Princeton UP, 2012. 80. Print.
(Used the above twice slightly differently)

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