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The US population is getting older, and increasingly more manipulated

exoplanet

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As our population ages, the effects of technology and the pace of change in technology continues to grow. The result? We are becoming a nation of suckers, getting conned online by various predators.

It's generally accepted that the rate of technological change grows exponentially. Which means that people born around 1950 grew up in a much more stable world than the people born eighteen years ago. While adoption of smart phones and other devices has gone up among seniors, the percentage of "digitally ready" seniors is very low. This isn't just an inability to find the right button to push, this is a fundamental lack of understand of how the internet works and who it's working for. For example, about one third of seniors think that Facebook news articles are being vetted by journalists and facebook staff, rather than realizing that it's being driven by an algorithm (link).

Meanwhile our population is getting older. By 2030, 1 in every 5 Americans will be over 65 and they will outnumber children for the first time in US history.

So what do we have? An increasing amount of people unprepared for the rapid change taking place on the internet participating in it with limited awareness and a lot of time on their hands. Due to the fact that older people tend to be more conservative, the political ramifications has shown up most significantly and earlier in conservative politics.

Various political PAC's are scamming them out of their money:

Why is the conservative movement not as effective as its supporters want it to be? Because day after day, year after year, little old ladies get called on the phone or emailed or sent letters in the mail telling them that the future of the country is at stake and that if they don't make a donation to groups that might as well be named Make Telemarketers Wealthy Again right now, the country will go to hell in a handbasket. Those little old ladies get out their checkbooks and give what they can spare, convinced that they're making a difference and helping make the world a better place. What they're doing is ensuring that the guys running these PACs can enjoy a more luxurious lifestyle.
...
The PACs propagate a narrative in which they're the heroic crusaders for conservative values, secure borders and freedom, up against corrupt establishment elites . . . when they're in fact run by those coastal political operatives and keeping most of the money for their own operations.

The Right's Grifter Problem - National Review
Granted, "little old ladies" is a patronizing description, but I wanted to post a link from well known conservative outlet just to make it clear that this is not a liberal/conservative issue. This is a generational issue and the split along partisan lines is just a function of demographics. (And if you were a conservative giving to these PAC's, you should mad as hell about the way your money was spent)

Seniors were disproportionately affected by fake news, and I see no reason why this trend will reverse or get better. Don't believe a scientific publication? How about an admitted fake news publisher?
Jestin Coler, who ran a network of websites that published completely false material about a, politics, and other topics, told BuzzFeed News that baby boomers were a key demographic for his sites because they are absolutely more likely to share and consume fake news online, particularly on Facebook.�

"We did target older age groups when running ads, and I'm sure you will find the same with hyperpartisan publishers," he said.

Old, Online, And Fed On Lies: How An Aging Population Will Reshape The Internet

TLDR: our population is getting increasingly participating in world that they don't understand and becoming increasingly vulnerable to exploitation. Overall, this is affecting our politics for the worse, either by misappropriating hard earned money or influencing decisions with highly targeted, manipulative information.

I don't have a solution for this, but at the very least, we need to recognize we have a problem.
 

ecofarm

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Old people will be our ruin. The whole place is gonna smell funny.
 

trouble13

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As our population ages, the effects of technology and the pace of change in technology continues to grow. The result? We are becoming a nation of suckers, getting conned online by various predators.

It's generally accepted that the rate of technological change grows exponentially. Which means that people born around 1950 grew up in a much more stable world than the people born eighteen years ago. While adoption of smart phones and other devices has gone up among seniors, the percentage of "digitally ready" seniors is very low. This isn't just an inability to find the right button to push, this is a fundamental lack of understand of how the internet works and who it's working for. For example, about one third of seniors think that Facebook news articles are being vetted by journalists and facebook staff, rather than realizing that it's being driven by an algorithm (link).

Meanwhile our population is getting older. By 2030, 1 in every 5 Americans will be over 65 and they will outnumber children for the first time in US history.

So what do we have? An increasing amount of people unprepared for the rapid change taking place on the internet participating in it with limited awareness and a lot of time on their hands. Due to the fact that older people tend to be more conservative, the political ramifications has shown up most significantly and earlier in conservative politics.

Various political PAC's are scamming them out of their money:

Granted, "little old ladies" is a patronizing description, but I wanted to post a link from well known conservative outlet just to make it clear that this is not a liberal/conservative issue. This is a generational issue and the split along partisan lines is just a function of demographics. (And if you were a conservative giving to these PAC's, you should mad as hell about the way your money was spent)

Seniors were disproportionately affected by fake news, and I see no reason why this trend will reverse or get better. Don't believe a scientific publication? How about an admitted fake news publisher?


TLDR: our population is getting increasingly participating in world that they don't understand and becoming increasingly vulnerable to exploitation. Overall, this is affecting our politics for the worse, either by misappropriating hard earned money or influencing decisions with highly targeted, manipulative information.

I don't have a solution for this, but at the very least, we need to recognize we have a problem.
You dont need a solution its a self correcting problem. The people your talking about are dying off and the new seniors entering that age group are technologically more savy.

Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
 

justabubba

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As our population ages, the effects of technology and the pace of change in technology continues to grow. The result? We are becoming a nation of suckers, getting conned online by various predators.

It's generally accepted that the rate of technological change grows exponentially. Which means that people born around 1950 grew up in a much more stable world than the people born eighteen years ago. While adoption of smart phones and other devices has gone up among seniors, the percentage of "digitally ready" seniors is very low. This isn't just an inability to find the right button to push, this is a fundamental lack of understand of how the internet works and who it's working for. For example, about one third of seniors think that Facebook news articles are being vetted by journalists and facebook staff, rather than realizing that it's being driven by an algorithm (link).

Meanwhile our population is getting older. By 2030, 1 in every 5 Americans will be over 65 and they will outnumber children for the first time in US history.

So what do we have? An increasing amount of people unprepared for the rapid change taking place on the internet participating in it with limited awareness and a lot of time on their hands. Due to the fact that older people tend to be more conservative, the political ramifications has shown up most significantly and earlier in conservative politics.

Various political PAC's are scamming them out of their money:

Granted, "little old ladies" is a patronizing description, but I wanted to post a link from well known conservative outlet just to make it clear that this is not a liberal/conservative issue. This is a generational issue and the split along partisan lines is just a function of demographics. (And if you were a conservative giving to these PAC's, you should mad as hell about the way your money was spent)

Seniors were disproportionately affected by fake news, and I see no reason why this trend will reverse or get better. Don't believe a scientific publication? How about an admitted fake news publisher?


TLDR: our population is getting increasingly participating in world that they don't understand and becoming increasingly vulnerable to exploitation. Overall, this is affecting our politics for the worse, either by misappropriating hard earned money or influencing decisions with highly targeted, manipulative information.

I don't have a solution for this, but at the very least, we need to recognize we have a problem.

you may be showing your age as your post only references the advances in technology of the internet

the expansion of technology will be across many other aspects of our lives as well

one does not have to understand the technology behind a device in order to use it

most who grew up with a telephone (wired), radio, and/or tv had no idea about the technology which enabled them to talk, watch and listen in ways never before contemplated

and finally, this is the information age. that's a good thing. it means more people have more access to more information than in any other era. exponentially so

of all the problems you think you have, this is not one of them
 

SDET

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This ageism is annoying. Older Americans such as yours truly understand not only the end product of the technology, but what went into it. How many young people understand binary math or hexadecimal, assembly language, what Twain_32.dll does or what a hardware handshake is? What is an 8 vs 16 vs 32 vs 64 bit processor? How do you write memory efficient code (a skill back in vogue with Data Science). The understanding of variance, co-variance linear regression is much deeper when you had to calculate them using pencil and paper. Younger people don't understand the fundamentals of what they are using.
 

justabubba

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This ageism is annoying. Older Americans such as yours truly understand not only the end product of the technology, but what went into it. How many young people understand binary math or hexadecimal, assembly language, what Twain_32.dll does or what a hardware handshake is? What is an 8 vs 16 vs 32 vs 64 bit processor? How do you write memory efficient code (a skill back in vogue with Data Science). The understanding of variance, co-variance linear regression is much deeper when you had to calculate them using pencil and paper. Younger people don't understand the fundamentals of what they are using.

hand them a slide rule with their test while removing their phone/calculator
let them learn some 'new' technology
 

SDET

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hand them a slide rule with their test while removing their phone/calculator
let them learn some 'new' technology


:applaud:applaud:applaud
 

FreedomFromAll

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It is not the older generations that anyone needs to worry about; its the internet/meme generation's and beyond. I see friends kids share easily debunked crap all the time.

Besides the old and the young, almost everyone seems to never look and see in a meme is factual or not. And many of those who do fact check do so by going to some hyper-biased site that says exactly what they wanted it to say. And it isnt even an American problem its a world problem. We live on a planet full of idiots.

Just remember it was not that long a go that mos tof the world could not reset a damn VCR clock.
 

Thoreau72

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As our population ages, the effects of technology and the pace of change in technology continues to grow. The result? We are becoming a nation of suckers, getting conned online by various predators.

It's generally accepted that the rate of technological change grows exponentially. Which means that people born around 1950 grew up in a much more stable world than the people born eighteen years ago. While adoption of smart phones and other devices has gone up among seniors, the percentage of "digitally ready" seniors is very low. This isn't just an inability to find the right button to push, this is a fundamental lack of understand of how the internet works and who it's working for. For example, about one third of seniors think that Facebook news articles are being vetted by journalists and facebook staff, rather than realizing that it's being driven by an algorithm (link).

Meanwhile our population is getting older. By 2030, 1 in every 5 Americans will be over 65 and they will outnumber children for the first time in US history.

So what do we have? An increasing amount of people unprepared for the rapid change taking place on the internet participating in it with limited awareness and a lot of time on their hands. Due to the fact that older people tend to be more conservative, the political ramifications has shown up most significantly and earlier in conservative politics.

Various political PAC's are scamming them out of their money:

Granted, "little old ladies" is a patronizing description, but I wanted to post a link from well known conservative outlet just to make it clear that this is not a liberal/conservative issue. This is a generational issue and the split along partisan lines is just a function of demographics. (And if you were a conservative giving to these PAC's, you should mad as hell about the way your money was spent)

Seniors were disproportionately affected by fake news, and I see no reason why this trend will reverse or get better. Don't believe a scientific publication? How about an admitted fake news publisher?


TLDR: our population is getting increasingly participating in world that they don't understand and becoming increasingly vulnerable to exploitation. Overall, this is affecting our politics for the worse, either by misappropriating hard earned money or influencing decisions with highly targeted, manipulative information.

I don't have a solution for this, but at the very least, we need to recognize we have a problem.

You may not have a solution, but at least you are able to describe the problem, and that is good.

Actually, Americans have been suckers for many generations, and there are explanations for it.

P.T. Barnum commented on it in the last century. There is a sucker born every minute, or words to that effect.

"The public appears to be disposed to be amused even while they are conscious of being deceived." or "The bigger the humbug, the better the people will like it."

We have been conditioned to be credulous and easily tricked.

Yes, the digital age and internet seems to contribute greatly to that effect.
 

notquiteright

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This ageism is annoying. Older Americans such as yours truly understand not only the end product of the technology, but what went into it. How many young people understand binary math or hexadecimal, assembly language, what Twain_32.dll does or what a hardware handshake is? What is an 8 vs 16 vs 32 vs 64 bit processor? How do you write memory efficient code (a skill back in vogue with Data Science). The understanding of variance, co-variance linear regression is much deeper when you had to calculate them using pencil and paper. Younger people don't understand the fundamentals of what they are using.

Apparently babbleism is ageless.... :doh

I'll wager the VAST majority of those born around 1950 have ZERO (0) clue what all the word dribble means... :roll:

A far better measure of the tech savvy senior would be any Consumer Cellular outlet... Christ on a crutch the confusion (and anger) at the 'smart phone' is sadly repeated while a mommy pushes her buggy past with a toddler using her cell phone... :shock:

With your ahhhh skill I guess, perhaps you should start a second career as a representative for reverse mortgages to seniors... :peace
 

exoplanet

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This ageism is annoying. Older Americans such as yours truly understand not only the end product of the technology, but what went into it. How many young people understand binary math or hexadecimal, assembly language, what Twain_32.dll does or what a hardware handshake is? What is an 8 vs 16 vs 32 vs 64 bit processor? How do you write memory efficient code (a skill back in vogue with Data Science).
Across all age groups, the answer to these questions would be close to zero.
The understanding of variance, co-variance linear regression is much deeper when you had to calculate them using pencil and paper. Younger people don't understand the fundamentals of what they are using.
While I can see a relevance of these things to technological understanding, it isn't what I think is driving the manipulation of people's information. Certainly there are plenty of clueless people in all age groups, but the problem is more prevalent in seniors and that age group is growing.
 

exoplanet

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You dont need a solution its a self correcting problem. The people your talking about are dying off and the new seniors entering that age group are technologically more savy.
The new seniors are not going to be any more prepared than the old seniors because technology keeps outpacing our readiness for change. I don't think any generation is immune. I expect that babies born today could be facing similar problems as they get older sixty years from now. The amount of money and time spent on the relentless pace of technology absolutely dwarfs whatever feeble attempts we've made to keep society up to speed.

The problem is not new, it's been going on for decades, if not centuries. It's just that we are at a point in time where our demographics are making us particularly vulnerable to exploitation. Much like how the growth of machines threatened people's livelihoods, the growth of artificial intelligence and big data are making it hard to understand who is trying to influence our behavior and how. I'm not saying we can't adapt, but it's not going to happen without recognizing the problem.
 

exoplanet

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you may be showing your age as your post only references the advances in technology of the internet

the expansion of technology will be across many other aspects of our lives as well

one does not have to understand the technology behind a device in order to use it

most who grew up with a telephone (wired), radio, and/or tv had no idea about the technology which enabled them to talk, watch and listen in ways never before contemplated

and finally, this is the information age. that's a good thing. it means more people have more access to more information than in any other era. exponentially so

of all the problems you think you have, this is not one of them
Yes, we have access to practically limitless information. It is such a vast amount of information that we need artificial intelligences to organize and filter that information. But as consumers we do not control these AI's, nor do they work for our interests. Almost no one understands how this works. What we found on the internet used to be based on simple keywords and our own curiosity, and what's most insidious is that on the surface it still appears to be that way. But now it is based on each user, their location/browsing/search history/online identity/purchasing history/psychological profile/social network. At the moment, Google for example, is (relatively speaking) benign, but something like Facebook has already shown how ruthless, pervasive and invisible that information control can be.

Certainly we don't have to understand technology to use it. But the advances in user interfaces and artificial intelligences has exponentially magnified the distance between what we understand and what we can use. Sure, almost no one understood what changing a channel on an analog TV did, but advertisers didn't know when we changed the channel, where we lived, the entire history of all the tv shows we'd watched, whether we had bought something as a result of a certain ad, who our friends were, what our friends had bought, whether we had responded to any of their recommendations, whether our political inclinations were conservative/liberal, how old we were, whether or not we had children, went to church, belonged to the NRA, bought a gun, etc... And perhaps more importantly advertisers couldn't change what we saw based on all of this information. When you consider that human memory is imperfect, and that our digital profiles can connect information about our friends/family that we don't have knowledge of, advertisers in some ways already know more about us than ourselves.
 

exoplanet

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It is not the older generations that anyone needs to worry about; its the internet/meme generation's and beyond. I see friends kids share easily debunked crap all the time.

Besides the old and the young, almost everyone seems to never look and see in a meme is factual or not. And many of those who do fact check do so by going to some hyper-biased site that says exactly what they wanted it to say. And it isnt even an American problem its a world problem. We live on a planet full of idiots.

Just remember it was not that long a go that mos tof the world could not reset a damn VCR clock.
Even fewer people can reset a VCR clock now, lol.

I'm not contending that any generation is immune, but I have provided evidence that these type of problems are more prevalent in seniors and that the senior population is growing. By all means, let's address this across all of society, but I do think we need to pay particular attention to older people.
 

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As our population ages, the effects of technology and the pace of change in technology continues to grow. The result? We are becoming a nation of suckers, getting conned online by various predators.

It's generally accepted that the rate of technological change grows exponentially. Which means that people born around 1950 grew up in a much more stable world than the people born eighteen years ago. While adoption of smart phones and other devices has gone up among seniors, the percentage of "digitally ready" seniors is very low. This isn't just an inability to find the right button to push, this is a fundamental lack of understand of how the internet works and who it's working for. For example, about one third of seniors think that Facebook news articles are being vetted by journalists and facebook staff, rather than realizing that it's being driven by an algorithm (link).

Meanwhile our population is getting older. By 2030, 1 in every 5 Americans will be over 65 and they will outnumber children for the first time in US history.

So what do we have? An increasing amount of people unprepared for the rapid change taking place on the internet participating in it with limited awareness and a lot of time on their hands. Due to the fact that older people tend to be more conservative, the political ramifications has shown up most significantly and earlier in conservative politics.

Various political PAC's are scamming them out of their money:

Granted, "little old ladies" is a patronizing description, but I wanted to post a link from well known conservative outlet just to make it clear that this is not a liberal/conservative issue. This is a generational issue and the split along partisan lines is just a function of demographics. (And if you were a conservative giving to these PAC's, you should mad as hell about the way your money was spent)

Seniors were disproportionately affected by fake news, and I see no reason why this trend will reverse or get better. Don't believe a scientific publication? How about an admitted fake news publisher?


TLDR: our population is getting increasingly participating in world that they don't understand and becoming increasingly vulnerable to exploitation. Overall, this is affecting our politics for the worse, either by misappropriating hard earned money or influencing decisions with highly targeted, manipulative information.

I don't have a solution for this, but at the very least, we need to recognize we have a problem.

Oh come on. You know you ha e a solution. You know that all you need to do is get rid of everyone over 45 or 50. Just think how great that would be! No old people to have to pretend to listen to. Health care costs would plummet. Less pollution from all those gas guzzlers old people can’t live without.
 

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Oh come on. You know you ha e a solution. You know that all you need to do is get rid of everyone over 45 or 50. Just think how great that would be! No old people to have to pretend to listen to. Health care costs would plummet. Less pollution from all those gas guzzlers old people can’t live without.

Nah we just have to outvote the loser boomer generation.
 

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... this is the information age. that's a good thing. it means more people have more access to more information than in any other era. exponentially so ...

I think OP is about this issue exactly - people get fake news from Russian troll farms, idiots on internet, and now the US President, and think it's "information".
 

FreedomFromAll

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Even fewer people can reset a VCR clock now, lol.

I'm not contending that any generation is immune, but I have provided evidence that these type of problems are more prevalent in seniors and that the senior population is growing. By all means, let's address this across all of society, but I do think we need to pay particular attention to older people.

I disagree in your conclusion that old people are a bigger problem that younger generations. For the reason that it is younger people who use technology more. The manipulations of users will have a bigger effect on a larger population base.
 

exoplanet

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Oh come on. You know you ha e a solution. You know that all you need to do is get rid of everyone over 45 or 50. Just think how great that would be! No old people to have to pretend to listen to. Health care costs would plummet. Less pollution from all those gas guzzlers old people can’t live without.
Heheh yeah, that'd be a great policy... till I'm 50! Then I gotta run from the sandmen. :O
 
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