It’s almost the 200th anniversary of the classic horror story Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley. So, what’s this got to do with marketing? Lately, there have been a slew of news stories about how advertising and newsfeeds have gone awry doing everything from favoring a political candidate, and allowing hostile foreign governments to influence elections, to allowing advertisers to target hate speech or dissidents without the search and social media giants knowing what’s going on. In this article, we will take a close look at the Frankenstein results being produced by search and ad algorithms now being used by the Internet giants. In fact, we will see how these scary results foreshadow the future of artificial intelligence and its uses in the 21st century.
So why should you care if Facebook or Google uses an algorithm to make advertising decisions? That’s a legitimate question. Facebook and Google are private companies, and they have the right to conduct business by any legal means at their disposal, right? I believe they do, as long as they don’t harm or mislead the public. However, we are finding that media giants and artificial intelligence do not always make decisions the way business people do. In fact, they aren’t always in control.
I had warned about the possibility of artificial intelligence algorithms going crazy. I predicted that soon these AI programs would either be hacked or produce unwanted results on their own. I also warned about media abuse that includes; censorship, fake news, and influence peddling as well. Read my prediction article for 2017 and my article on the 2016 election.
On top of that, we as a free people have to wake up to the fact that these media giants hold massive sway over public opinion. The way I see it is we have three types of potential Frankenstein problems that could come from the Internet in the near future. The first is the abuse of reporting and influence peddling, AKA skewed or fake news, which we are inundated with today. The second is artificially intelligent algorithms running amok, and the third is clever hackers (either by themselves or under government edict) taking control of the media to push their twisted agenda.
To read the remainder of Hector’s article, please click here.