1. bookVolume 13 (2021): Issue 1 (May 2021)
    The Dark Sides of Digital Marketing
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
First Published
30 May 2019
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
access type Open Access

The Illusion of Free Choice in the Age of Augmented Decisions

Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
First Published
30 May 2019
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
Abstract

In our augmented world, many decision situations are designed by smart technologies. Artificial intelligence helps reduce information overload, filter relevant information and limit an otherwise overwhelming abundance of choices. While such algorithms make our lives more convenient, they also fulfill various organizational objectives that users may not be aware of and that may not be in their best interest. We do not know whether algorithms truly optimize the benefits of their users or rather the return on investment of a company. They are not only designed for convenience but also to be addictive, and this opens the doors for manipulation. Therefore, augmented decision making undermines the freedom of choice. To limit the threats of augmented decisions and enable humans to be critical towards the outcomes of artificial intelligence–driven recommendations, everybody should develop “algorithmic literacy.” It involves a basic understanding of artificial intelligence and how algorithms work in the background. Algorithmic literacy also requires that users understand the role and value of the personal data they sacrifice in exchange for decision augmentation.

Keywords

Carrington, V. (2018): “The Changing Landscape of Literacies: Big Data and Algorithms”, Digital Culture & Education, Vol. 10, pp. 67–76. Search in Google Scholar

Harris, Tristan and Aza Raskin (2019): “Down the Rabbit Hole by Design”, Your Undivided Attention (Podcast). Search in Google Scholar

Ricciardi, Victor and Douglas Rice (2014): “Risk Perception and Risk Tolerance”, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Search in Google Scholar

Thompson, Kelly (2020): “YouTube’s plot to silence conspiracy theories”, Wired, September 18, https://www.wired.com/story/youtube-algorithm-silence-conspiracy-theories/ Search in Google Scholar

Recommended articles from Trend MD

Plan your remote conference with Sciendo