Reflection Blog #2

For this post, I want to take a deeper look at the biases that have emerged because of the internet. The reading that really intrigued me this time was the article by Danah Boyd entitled “What World Are We Building?” In the beginning of the article, Boyd looks at how social media can be perceived differently. For instance, she discusses talking to some teens in the late 2000s about which social media platforms they use. Some of the teens she was interviewing and communicating with implied that MySpace was lesser than Facebook. They specifically described MySpace as being “ghetto” or that the users are “more likely to be barely educated and obnoxious” (Boyd, 2016). (sidebar: I also used MySpace before moving to Facebook. I honestly can’t remember why I made the change.) This is only one instance of bias that Boyd came across during her research.

In Lauersen’s article “Do you want to dance? Inclusion and belonging in libraries and beyond,” he talks about inclusion and exclusion on a broader scale. For example, language itself is a tool for inclusion and exclusion in that anyone that knows the same language as you can be included, but you are (intentionally or not) excluding those who do not know the same language. This brings me back to Boyd’s insight on social media because the algorithms that govern social media will automatically include and exclude things that have been shown to statistically match your profile. It’s really interesting to realize that the World Wide Web isn’t very wide at all because of that.


Boyd, D. (2016). What World Are We Building?

Lauersen, C. (2018). “Do you want to dance? Inclusion and belonging in libraries and beyond.


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3 Responses to Reflection Blog #2

  1. Michelle Rasmuson says:

    Dear ToneeRose,
    You chose to write about two of the articles that I also found intriguing in this week’s module. I’m an outlier when in comes to social media, meaning I don’t participate on it, so I was surprised to learn that there was a kind of status or class label associated with some of the platforms. It also seems likely that these biased comments were collected and passed on, rather than being based on truisms. Humans always find a way back to the “us” vs. “them” mentality, which is something as information professionals we need to be vigilantly challenging with awareness to successfully offset.

  2. Michelle Rasmuson says:

    I forgot to say I love your blog title!

  3. @toneerose It’s interesting to think about the current state of social media and what Boyd wrote about a few years ago. Watching Twitter implode has been rough. I have been disheartened on occasion by the things I see play out against various populations online.

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