Social Media and Search Engines

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Social Media and Information Access

Social media is a diverse area that attracts people from all walks of life. Through the advent of various social media applications, it is now easier than ever to obtain the knowledge one requires with fewer challenges and attempts. Users can now easily access any information they need for something online thanks to social media. Because of the existence of multiple websites with the aim of providing as much information to consumers as possible, it is simple to obtain access to whatever information one desires. Coupled with search engines, it is very likely that any information entered by a user is aggregated is within reach by anyone in the social media platforms (Bernadas and Delphine 46).

The Impact of Search Engines

Search engines have made it hard for information to remain unreachable in the social media platform. Given the numerous websites currently running, it is impossible for information to escape their capture. In that context, therefore, the privacy of information has been compromised by the aspect of data mining through search engines. The search engines enable the access of any information entered by a user regardless of the website used. This is because any information shared is captured by sites and a soft click on a search page will align out all the websites with the information being sought (Bernadas and Delphine 47). This is to mean that anyone can access a lot of information, both intended to be shared and unintended to be shared through search engines.

Concerns about Privacy and Data Aggregation

Referring to Andrews 715 presentation, he ultimately does not approve the concept of data aggregation and search engines play in social media. He feels that there is a denial of personal privacy as far as people's information is concerned and the need to stay protected. This is due to the aggregation of data by websites which in the term can remunerate it at will through searches by different users and organizations. This seems to control every move that is made by individuals and interferes with the social life of almost everyone due to the sensitivity of some information that is accessible to other users through search engines. This is because of data aggregators monitor, collect and sell information to corporations (Bernadas and Delphine 56). This is randomly done without filtering of sensitive information that ought to be protected for privacy purposes. Therefore this monitoring according to Andrews 718 is not the best that accompany social media usage and need to stay protected.

Violation of Individual Rights

He deems this practice being very wrong in the context that the data aggregation happens without the knowledge of the social media users. Although they are aware that it is happening, they are not in a position to control it due to the inaccessibility of the right channels to counter this. Therefore it can be considered that this aspect is beyond the monitoring of social media users and it could be used to harm their privacy (Bales and Ron 68). The fact that some of their users' post their information with the motive of convicting it to their friends and close counterparts makes this issue a very critical one. This is due to the reason that, however confidential and carefully the information is structured and configured to the person intended for, it will find its way to the websites that make it available to anyone upon entering in the search engines.

Misuse of User Information

More into this, the practice of search engines and data aggregation is termed wrong according to George due to the usage of other person's information for the benefit of an organization without the inclusion of the individual. For instance, Facebook is a leading marketer in the world. Its prosperity in this is recognized through the trading of people's information without their consent. Being a world recognized platform, Facebook has a mountain of information about its users that it can use to make a fortune for itself through its trade (Bales and Ron 88). Therefore, due to this knowledge, other companies are approaching Facebook to perform their advertisement and marketing activities to its users through the actualized reference to their information on likes and dislikes. The leading on the requirement by Facebook on its users to provide as much information as possible on what they like or dislike about their lifestyles and product desires leads to the actual benefits of the Facebook web page as well as other partnering companies (Bernadas and Delphine 42). Therefore, his could be considered wrong practices on the utilization of people's information for the benefits of others especially when the users are not in a position to protect their information once submitted.

Risks and Ethical Concerns

Moreover, data aggregation is considered a corrupt practice in the context that it exposes security information of other people, their financial status, and contact information. You will find that these websites have someone's security information from his or her full names, contact details, credit card numbers as well as banking institutions that he or she uses. This might be a risk factor I that, by using the information acquired, the person can be traced and great harm caused to them (Bales and Ron 75). For instance, online scammers might use the banking information of a person to rob him or her or complicate transaction abilities and above all steal from them. A case has been presented where thieves approached one of the aggregators' websites feigning to be business companies and were able to gain access to some people's credit cards information and much more information. This is just but to show how harmful data aggregation can be detrimental.

Manipulation and Misrepresentation

Data collection might also be used to paint a user wrongly by the aggregator's websites. To match up with required advertisement needs, a person's information might be altered by the aggregators with the interest of meeting individual marketing strategies (Bales and Ron 78). This could be done directly with the information provided or through the alteration of someone's information. Due to this, one will be compelled to like something that might not be of interest or fake interest due to altered information about those who are depicted to like them.

Ethical Concerns of Data Aggregation

Data aggregation is also hitting ethical issues in the social media platform. Many aggregators are intruding the privacy of consumers using wrong ways. Most of them are abandoning the website and social media data aggregation practices and invading personal computers (Bales and Ron 74). They are doing this by directing computer browsers to store all the information that a user fills on his or her computer from where they can retrieve it. This can be considered to be online scamming which is not healthy for modern living.

The Positive Potential of Data Mining

However, data mining can have positive uses for society. It can be used to benefit the people in the context that data collected can be used to tailor consumer services that will match the user's needs. Companies can use information collected about consumers and strategically embark on providing services that try to meet the customer needs. This can be done through Facebook and other social media platforms data aggregation (Bernadas and Delphine 38). Through this, likes and dislikes about consumers can be deduced and through this guidance, companies can advertise their products that are assured of consumer acceptance.

Negative Impacts of Data Mining

Needless to say, data mining can also be used as a destructive practice as outlined by George. Information extracted from individual posts can be a destroying factor to their profiles. This is due to the editing that is associated with this by data aggregators. To display a particular image of something, some data aggregators edit the personal information of people has to meet their requirements. This alteration of information could be harmful to social media users in some ways. Moreover, aggregation of personal and sensitive information can compromise the security of individuals. For instance, the security and financial information of individuals could be a significant threat to their physical and financial security (Andrews, 711).

Work Cited

Andrews, Lori. "George Orwell.......... Meet Mark Zuckerberg". The Land Of Liberty, 707-721, 2017,

Bales, Kevin, and Ron Soodalter. The Slave Next Door: Human Trafficking and Slavery in America Today. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2009. Print.

Bernadas, Christine, and Delphine Minchella. Proceedings of the European Conference on Social Media: 12-13 July 2016, Hosted by L'ecole De Management De Normandie (em Normandie), Caen, France. , 2016. Print.

October 13, 2022
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