The proper use of the Internet, the “Echo Chambers” of Social Media and the Lifelong Learning

After humanity’s first contact with the internet where the first commercial service providers began to appear in 1990 in several American cities and until now where 100% of information is transferred online, and having the most ten years the emergence of social media in our lives, we are given the opportunity to assess how the internet is used by modern societies during the 4th Industrial Revolution.

by Thanos S. Chonthrogiannis

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It is dangerous to live in an echo chamber
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The use of the Internet

With the advent of social media in our lives, a very large percentage of humanity was moved from the internet to the realm of social media, in most cases ignoring the rationally qualitative use of the internet.

Only a minority percentage of internet users use it in a creative way to train, experiment, attempt, learn correctly, connect with other different culture societies, develop economically, politically and generally cognitive.

Most citizens use the internet mainly for communication and for online entertaining reasons, largely ignoring the highest degree of service they could seek and obtain paid or unpaid through it. This finding is an indisputable fact that this vast majority of human societies lack the quality use of the internet.

The Social Media and their “Echo Chambers”

Users, especially ever younger internet users, prefer to be informed by social media such as Facebook  and  Twitter,  etc. that by the nature of their operation favor conflicts and ultimately create isolated worlds-digital communities and societies respectively that do not communicate with each other.

As a result, these isolated digital communities and societies respectively act as the so-called “Echo Chambers”.

That is, closed online digital worlds that have at their disposal strong technical capabilities, where each user and participant chooses to communicate only with members of the same digital community or society who have the same opinion and view as that thus excluding any disagreement and ultimately rejecting the creative dialogue that forms the basis of liberal society.

In this case, these digital communities-echo chambers that are isolated from the rest of society are much more important to their members than any rules and institutions governing a democratic society.

In fact, these ‘Echo chambers’ act as closed sects that support their members and their common view towards the rest of society by excluding permanent dialogue and the opposing view that promotes a constructive approach to solve any social or political problem.

In these closed digital communities-Echo Chambers dominates instinct and bias, creating deliberately or not, rifts in social cohesion, further isolating these people within their closed circle that operates within social media.

A timeless negative result of the above findings is the further isolation of these people, the ignoring by political processes and hot social issues in general. These citizens become more easily “manipulative” to any information they like and adopt it since they all agree on the same issue together and take the same position and opinion on it.

The Lifelong Learning

At the same time, the continuous web existence and coexistence within these closed echo chambers creates serious weaknesses, especially in younger generations of users in terms of writing, reading, constructive criticism and dialogue and civic participation.

This fact-finding, which mainly concerns younger user ages creates a highly problematic and negative background in education and skills for young people who would otherwise help them to demand with a better chance of job independence and security respectively through the rational use of the Internet and not only that.

In today’s age knowledge requires continuous search for the many different knowledge resources and beyond the knowledge resources provided by the school and the university. These many different knowledge resources can be sought in the rational use of the internet.

Given this, learning and acquiring skills ceases to be limited to school and university and is transformed into lifelong learning and learning to acquire qualifications that will make employees and workers competitive in the working environment that the 4th Industrial Revolution now forms.

The states of the planet are obliged to shape for their societies concrete-open platform digital post-skills ecosystems to shrink the digital divide between different generations of citizens, enabling their citizens to become part of digital networks.

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