Turns Out Most People Still Don't Hate 'Big Internet' As Much As Politicians And The Media Want Them To

from the these-things-make-our-lives-better dept

"The narrative" over the past few years concerning internet companies has clearly shifted. It went from one that generally praised the wonders and power of the internet to one that now blames the internet for everything. The hagiographc coverage of the past clearly went too far, but the current "techlash" seems to have gone way too far in the other direction as well -- much of it from people grasping at straws over why things they don't like have happened in the world. The good folks over at The Verge have done a big consumer survey of people's general opinions of various big internet companies and it shows that most people still like these internet services, and believe, on the whole, that they make their lives better, not worse. Even the services that get the "worst" grades, still get over a 60% "favorable" rating, while Amazon, Google, YouTube, Netflix, Microsoft, and Apple all come in over 80% positive (with Amazon, Google, and YouTube breaking 90%).

A separate question asked how people view these companies' impact on society, and again, they are mostly positive -- and even in the cases where there is some level of negativity (mainly: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter), the positive feelings greatly outweigh the negative:

There are many more fascinating findings and I recommend checking out the full Verge story on this, though I will note a bit of generational shock, as someone who lived through the 90s era of everyone in tech absolutely hating Microsoft and not trusting the company one bit, to Microsoft now being listed as the company that people trust the most with their data. Times sure have changed.

Still, as the general narrative -- and a lot of political rhetoric -- is focused on how awful these companies are and how "something must be done" about them, it does seem worth noting that most of the public seems to really like these services and feel the world is a better place because of them.

Now, take that information and compare it to just how little people trust companies in the telecom sector, and you might wonder why none of the narrative seems to focus on those companies. Indeed, the only political pressure on those companies seems to be to get them to merge and consolidate faster. Also, I should note that as fond as people are of repeating the silly and misleading line that "if you're not paying for it, you're the product," compare the levels of trust between all of these free internet services (very high) and the telco services you pay for (very low), and perhaps realize that it's not the "free" or "not free" part that engenders trust.

Filed Under: big internet, big tech, consumers, narrative, techlash, users
Companies: amazon, apple, facebook, google, microsoft, twitter, youtube


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  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Mar 2020 @ 12:34pm

    Media trying to charge money so people can read the news of coronavirus and where it is spreading and by how much can eat shit you motherfuckers.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Mar 2020 @ 12:59pm

    Interesting that the people shouting that you can't trust Big Internet are politicians, media companies, and telcos.

    The people saying you can't trust politicians, media companies and telcos are... everyone else.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Mar 2020 @ 6:23pm

      Re:

      They must be doing that so they can reveal those they truly don't trust.. the public!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 5 Mar 2020 @ 3:44am

      Re:

      Wonderful logic, innit?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 5 Mar 2020 @ 11:37am

        Re: Re:

        [Citation Needed]

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 10 Mar 2020 @ 8:19am

          Re: Re: Re:

          For my comment re the logic?

          No, i think I'll let my own opinion stand as the opinion it was offered in. Do i need to cite myself on this now?

          However, to clarify - i concurred with the OP's implication. It is indeed interesting logic employed by the politicians, media companies and telcos that they, being condemned by everyone else see themselves as fit to point fingers and shout "J'accuse".

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    mrtraver (profile), 4 Mar 2020 @ 1:55pm

    I mostly just hate politicians and the media. Oh, and cilantro.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Mar 2020 @ 3:01pm

    The underlying network is still not clear of the problem but those companies have good business models.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Mar 2020 @ 7:20pm

    Surveys are probably useless. Zero of the polls got the first democrat primary winner right.

    Zero.

    Why do we go on believing polls and surveys etc? It's so funny, democrats will have us believe that ELECTIONS (where it's a crime to interfere) are rigged, and that there's voter suppression. But surveys are accurate?! You know it's quite legal to pump out lies in the form of surveys, generally, right?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Toom1275 (profile), 4 Mar 2020 @ 8:33pm

      Re:

      "I rolled a 1 on this die, therefore my friend lied when he told me I'm more likely to roll between 2-6"

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        kag (profile), 5 Mar 2020 @ 5:59am

        Re: Re:

        I think you proved his point, these surveys are about as random as a roll of the dice, despite the media telling us that they are accurate. They aren't accurate, they are designed to tell people how they should think.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Toom1275 (profile), 5 Mar 2020 @ 9:38pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          The point you both miss is that a different outcome than expected in no way invalidates the prediction; that's just how probability works.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 6 Mar 2020 @ 10:11am

          Re: Re: Re:

          If someone tells you that their weekly survey is accurate to +/- 5 %, 19 times out of 20, then you shouldn't be surprised when, 2-3 times each year, it's off by more than 5%.

          That's just how statistics work.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 5 Mar 2020 @ 10:19am

        Re: Re:

        "You have failed your intelligence check. Lose 4 HP."

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    kag (profile), 5 Mar 2020 @ 6:01am

    Tech

    Nobody has to use facebook, instagram, or google. If you dont like it, don't use it. As for progressive politicians, we are forced to pay for their programs and corruption whether we like it or not. That is the real problem.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Toom1275 (profile), 5 Mar 2020 @ 9:39pm

      Re: Tech

      As for progressive politicians, we are forced to pay for their programs and corruption

      Such as?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 9 Mar 2020 @ 7:34am

      Re: Tech

      "As for progressive politicians, we are forced to pay for their programs and corruption whether we like it or not."

      Is this where we bring up the way republican presidents have consistently inflated the national debt?

      Or, for that matter, even leaving out the low-hanging fruit of GWB in that regard, are you seriously talking about the corruption of progressive politician with Trump in office?
      Name me one progressive politician this side of the civil war who gave as many cushy white house jobs to his closest relatives, hmm?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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