As the smartest species on the block, human beings are well-informed in regards to what they can do. This knowledge helps us immensely whenever we have to map out our next big step, but unfortunately, it does suffer from some limitations. You see, if this is your primary method, you are less likely to think beyond the parameters of your existing knowledge, and that can be damaging over the long-term. On the other hand, when you keep an open mind, there would be occasions where you might end up making a sensational discovery. To better understand the said claim, we only have to look at an example like technology. The world was never stumbling upon such a creation with, we what can call, a narrow mindset. In fact, the incentive to have that expansive outlook will only grow once technology becomes the ultimate centerpiece of our lives. Nevertheless, while we talk about how important it is for an individual to not be restrictive, we must acknowledge there is a certain manner in which we should pursue it. For instance, in a bid to keep an open mind, we cannot do anything brazen that also opens up a lot of loopholes. The world will learn it the hard way. Yes, we are very much referring to the burgeoning detrimental impact of technology, most notably of social media. In fact, the latter was on full display during Meta’s recent mistake.
Meta has officially confirmed a “massive ranking failure”, which was caused by a bug in its systems. According to The Verge, the issue was first detected in October 2021 after some engineers observed a huge misinformation spike. Meta’s usual approach to false facts revolves around demoting the concerned post, but instead, the bug will significantly bolster the reach of such content, giving it a shocking 30% bump on a global scale. While the issue has since been fixed, it doesn’t look better once you realize that, apart from misinformation, the social media giant also failed to discourage posts, which involved nudity, violence, and controversial political content.
As much as Meta will hate it, this latest mistake ties neatly into its struggle to retain control over the content. We have already seen many political figures accusing the company on the basis of its questionable policies, so amid such a volatile environment, an error of this sort cannot be expected to help Meta’s case.
According to Meta spokesperson, Joe Osborne, the company “detected inconsistencies in downranking on five separate occasions, which correlated with small, temporary increases to internal metrics.” Osborne went on to reassure that the bug “has not had any meaningful, long-term impact on our metrics.”
Interestingly enough, while the bug was first spotted in October 2021, some internal documents reveal it was sitting dormant since 2019.