I recently came across this Instagram post: https://www.instagram.com/p/Ckv00Fuo7po/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

A person says, "thank you for ruining my life" and Instagram replies, "I'm literally an algorithm designed to maintain your attention by learning from your behaviour and mirroring back that which, consciously or not, captivates you and the social worlds through which you move. I am literally one of the most fascinating tools for collective and personal shadow ever created - that is, only if you learn to recognise that you aren't disturbed by social media, you are disturbed by your own reflection".

Now I know that this is just a social media meme, and probably nothing much serious. But the line of thought has intrigued me. This idea about social media being ultimately a product of our own inner nature, or maybe collective nature seems like an interesting view in what it may imply about our nature. It is also at the same time of course true that it also affects our preferences rather than just reflecting it. How does that all function?

So this is my question: I wanted to know what are some serious academic works, books, papers etc. on the philosophy of social media: what it is, what is its nature, why does it captivate us, what does that imply about us as individuals and about society at large, what about power dynamics in it etc. etc.

  • 2
    Maybe Luciano Floridi's books: The Philosophy of Information, Oxford University Press, 2011, The Ethics of Information, Oxford University Press, 2013, "The Fourth Revolution: How the Infosphere is Reshaping Human Reality", Oxford University Press, 2014, The Logic of Information, Oxford University Press, 2019. Commented Nov 11, 2022 at 10:30
  • In Italian: Matteo Grandi, Far Web. Odio, bufale, bullismo. Il lato oscuro dei social (2017, Rizzoli) Commented Nov 11, 2022 at 10:51
  • 1
    Lots of publications on this one. Daub's What Tech Calls Thinking, Smith's The Internet is not What You Think It Is", Peters' *The Marvelous Clouds: Toward a Philosophy of Elemental Media, and much more. Search Google Books using keywords like 'social media philosophy' and so on.
    – DJohnson
    Commented Nov 11, 2022 at 12:19


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