Beware of the echo chamber

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Of all of the things social media has brought into our daily lives, the echo chamber is probably the scariest.

What is the echo chamber?

It’s an environment in which a person encounters only beliefs or opinions that coincide with their own, so that their existing views are reinforced and alternative ideas are not considered.

Our Facebook, Instagram and other social media feeds create an accidental echo chamber for each of us. Algorithms only reinforce it by prioritizing content we are already likely to agree with.

As a result many people believe that their way of thinking and beliefs are shared by everyone else and that opposing views are non-existent or greatly over-exaggerated.

This is usually not the case though.

The phenomena helps contribute to the sharp divide we see over hot-button issues and especially in our politics.

The key is to be aware and to seek out information and viewpoints different from your own.

As we head to the polls Nov. 5 keep the echo chamber in mind. Don’t assume that everyone is for sure voting a certain way because of what you see around you. Take the time to be educated with all options on your ballot.

Most importantly though, go vote!

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