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Well done, user! You made it to the end of YouMind. I'm glad you decided to come with me on this journey.

Below, I've laid out your greatest pitfall, based on what behavior you displayed. You'll also find below what you can do to beat these challenges. After checking your trainer kit, I'll see you again at the door below!

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Your greatest challenge: Rabbitholes.

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Don't be fooled by harmless nature,
they can do more damage than you think!

You're prone to stay in your "online comfort-zone". Which means you probably end up in rabbit holes often.

 

You might start off with entertainment based videos such as you did with PewDiePie. Though, within a few clicks it's easy to see how you might move to a more serious topic such as algorithms rating your appearance. 

It's not bad in itself to be influenced by algorithms, because most of us are! But you are likely to see one-sided information, which could end up being a problem.

 

This is what you can do:

Practical things:

  • Use safer browsers, such as Brave or make use of a VPN to protect your searches and privacy online. This limits algorithms influence.

  • Delete your YouTube history! YouTube saves all your searches and clicks to help build a profile of you (which is also used by third parties and Google btw!). Here you can find easy steps on how to do it.  

True or False

(Probably) true!

Google sets up user profiles with characteristics, and that's risky because all their partners can use to send you personalized ads.

Curious about what your profile looks like?
Check it by login into Google and clicking here.

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YouTube (and Google) know
A LOT about who you are.

And keep asking yourself:

  • How many videos have I watched that are like this?

  • Could there be another side to this topic that I haven't seen?

  • Is this purely educational or are there any serious matters being discussed?

An important way that algorithms use as input is implicit and explicit feedback.

Explicit is what you realize, so likes, comments, clicking.
Implicit is what you don't realize, so not clicking on a video to if it was raining outside or which time of the day it was. 

Youtube is making more use of implicit feedback nowadays to make recommendations more accurate.

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Your implicit and explicit feedback

What else you should check: Misinformation.

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Let me ask you... I have this substance, 100% of the people who drink it eventually die, it's used in most bombs and poison. Would you ever drink the substance?

Not your biggest pitfall but still important to watch out for nonetheless: misinformation. See the statement above? That substance is water. This is why framing is everything when it comes to presenting facts.

 

It's easier than you think to fall for simple misinformation. Especially, if you place value on their opinion, such as with PewDiePie.

 

But remember, even presenting facts from just one side, is not fully the truth. Most people you watch have a hidden agenda; ulterior motives.

 

This is what you can do:

Keep asking yourself:

  • Am I sure what is portrayed in this video is fact-based?

  • Should I check another video or news articles?

  • Does this align with other information?

  • Am I open-minded about this topic?

  • Are any numbers mentioned, or reliable sources?

  • Is the YouTuber gaining anything with presenting this fact to me?

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You did well, user! Now, remember. Algorithms can be convenient, but make sure you know that most of what you see is filtered. This way you are in charge of shaping your online reality. Good luck out there!

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