If the age of the internet has taught us anything, it is that there is a big difference between appearance and reality. Seth Stephens-Davidowitz unpacks the surprising differences between what we tell everyone else, and what we tell Google (and the rest of the internet). Our sexual behaviour, our real attitudes to race, our most profound anxieties are very different to what we say. It turns out that we all broadcast our own fake news. Until now. Big data is exposing the truth about our lies. Is this the dawn of a new understanding of who we are as human beings? Will we be able to bear the truth?
We had Hitler before we had big data, he used propaganda to manipulate people’s minds. There’s nothing new about being part of an authoritarian regime.