Watch: “We are being controlled by social media” – Prof. Alexei Dingli

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

“Social media is, unfortunately, affecting society not in the best manner. It has brought us closer to people away from us but has made us become distant from those right next to us, explained Prof. Alexei Dingli as he was interviewed by Prof. Andrew Azzopardi on 103 Malta’s Heart.

Prof. Dingli mentioned how on average a person spends 2 hours and 20 minutes a day viewing what’s on social media. Prof. Azzopardi mentioned an article recently published by Alexei Dingli; Facebook is ruining your life: A quick look at the negative effects of social media on our society.

He continued to explain that social media is a mercenary to likes and comments which are converted to adverts and that is how money is made. Also mentioned how through algorithms it will make it easier for social media providers to perfectly understand what are your likings. “They would probably know what you like more than you do,” said Prof. Dingli.

During the interview the issue of fake news was also mentioned. Prof. Alexei Dingli said that fake news spreads six times faster than real news. He mentioned how recently a fake news regarding a COVID-19 vaccine and how it can change our DNA was being circulated. “Unfortunately, people see the headline and share the news. I totally disagree with Mark Zukerberg, the owner of Facebook, who says that it is people’s responsibility what they share,” said Prof. Dingli.

Prof. Alexei Dingli also mentioned how the European Commission is expected to focus the next ten years on a more digital European Union, focusing on data and new technology such as airtificial intelligence.

In his article, Prof. Dingli refers to armchair critics and how they rebranded themselves as social activists.

Presenter Prof. Andrew Azzopardi asked if people can become addicted to social media in the sme way a a person can become addicted to drugs or alcohol. Prof. Dingli said yes, people do get addicted to social media. “I am not demonising social media but it could bring out the worse in society.”

Andrew Azzopardi on 103 airs on Saturdays on 103 Malta’s Heart at 10 am and repeated later on