A few months ago it was brought to my attention that Facebook actively engages in controlling information flows, surveilling users and censoring their content. I wrote a blog post regarding the censorship processes Facebook moderators follow and found the results of my research quite intriguing.
As a result of Facebook’s conscious decisions to control, surveil and censor, it has been labeled a ‘walled garden’. Facebook collects data on its individual users, — see Max Schrems’ class action lawsuit against Facebook for more on Facebook’s data collection means —, controls the way in which this data is managed and moreover censors the individuals whom produce the data it values most. Thus Facebook’s centralised nature as a closed platform is proof that it is a walled garden limiting users in a number of ways.
The following infographic explores the way in which Facebook conceptualises the ‘walled garden’ in a contemporary online setting.
- Al Jazeera, 2015, ‘Is Facebook Right to Censor User Content?’, Al Jazeera, 17 March, viewed 6 September April 2015, <http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/insidestory/2015/03/facebook-censor-user-content-150317021301434.html>
- Facebook, 2015, ‘Community Standards’, Facebook, 2015, viewed 6 September 2015, <https://www.facebook.com/communitystandards>
- Mitew, T., 2014, ‘The Feudalisation of the Internet’, Lecture /YouTube Video, DIGC202, University of Wollongong, 1 September 2014, viewed September 4th 2015, via <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fm–tHw8To&list=PLiPp71qLKusXOU1bKxHVappCbRNN3-J-j&index=21>