Pooja Poddar Marwah

“I know what you’re up to!” says the algorithm..

Ever noticed how your phone understands your thoughts?

Ever realised how your phone shows you exactly what you want to see?

You open it to Google and there are articles and articles about ‘Things to do in Istanbul.’ Not that you have been there, but mentally you’ve been planning! And perhaps may have searched for it one time, in the near past.

You are being watched, every second of every day! And with the advancement of technology that seems to provide us all with ease and comfort, I urge you to take a step back and keep yourself and your family secure! The algorithm knows what you are up to, and not only does it have an elephant’s memory but it brings to the surface your every search, your every click, and your every move!

And, you are still trying to convince yourself that it’s a safe world out there?

Social media algorithms are like silent lurkers, constantly learning from your interactions and preferences. They analyse your behaviour—what you like, share, comment on, and even how long you linger on a post. Armed with this data, they curate your feed, showing you content that aligns with your interests and beliefs.

While this may seem convenient, it comes at a cost. Algorithms create echo chambers, surrounding us with opinions and ideas that mirror our own. They validate our perspectives, reinforcing our biases and narrowing our worldview. This leads to a distorted reality, where we’re only exposed to information that confirms what we already believe.

It prioritises engagement, often promoting sensational or controversial content over factual or nuanced information. This fuels misinformation and polarization, affecting our understanding of complex issues and straining our relationships with those who hold different views. It ends up complicating human relationships and our ability to converse with each other.  I believe the most insidious impact of algorithms is their effect on our mental health. The constant stream of curated content leads to comparison, anxiety, and a fear of missing out. We measure our worth in likes and comments, seeking validation from a digital world, that will never fully understand or appreciate who we really are.

You are being watched, like it or not! And, the impact of algorithms extends beyond our personal lives. They also influence our relationships, shaping how we communicate and connect with others. They prioritize content that is likely to generate engagement, such as clickbait headlines or sensationalized stories, which distort our perception of reality and lead to misunderstandings with those around us.

Have you ever noticed how algorithms affect your interactions with friends and family? Your social media feed is filled with posts and updates from people who share similar views and interests as you. While this creates a sense of community, it also creates a barrier between you and those who have different perspectives. Over time, this leads to a narrowing of your social circle, as you may be less inclined to engage with those who challenge your beliefs.

Algorithms have revolutionized the way we communicate and consume information. They are the silent lurkers or voyeurs if I may say, that we all have. A shadow that is permanently with us, watching our every move.

You can’t avoid it as social media is a part of our life, but what you can do – is learn how to master it! With me.




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