Big tech loves content that stirs our emotions, whether that be anger, fear, or passion, because they know we’re more likely to engage with it with a like, comment, or share. These actions make us more valuable to sell to advertisers because it reveals the things we’re passionate about.
The problem isn’t that political speech shouldn’t evoke emotion, especially considering the grand challenges we face as a society. The complexities of our criminal justice or free market system cannot be distilled into snappy, emotionally charged slogans. The over-simplified drama surrounding these issues prevents them from being addressed in a solutions-driven mindset. They simply become parts of a surface level identity war (black lives matter vs blue lives matter) with no common ground in sight.
Think about your daily internet habits, the sites you visit, the videos you watch. Is the content meant to inform you, or is it meant to make you feel a certain way?
Here are some resources explaining the problem of sensationalistic content and what we can do about it: