The work I do involves personal attention. This is a hindrance to me, but a valuable and increasingly rare offering for my clients.
It hinders me because personal attention does not scale easily or infinitely. What scales well are impersonal algorithms and automated interactions… and they have caused some massive embarrassments.
> Facebook enabling advertisers to target people based on their interest in topics like "Jew hater"
> Amazon's algorithm suggesting to shoppers bomb-making ingredients that were often bought together
> Google allowing ads focused on racist keywords and automatically suggesting other bigoted words they might want to try
On a lighter note, a guitarist I know set up his Twitter account to automatically retweet messages about his lead singer. This led to him retweeting a series of posts from people who said that lead singer sucked.
These kinds of things will happen again. There is very little human oversight of these platforms. Facebook has only about one employee for every 100,000 users.
I am slower and more methodical than algorithms and automation. My work does not scale as well as they do. But there are definite advantages to that.
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