Social media are more involved with our entertainment and expressing our views than the traditional means. People have found a way of starting and promoting their businesses online, with some choosing to focus on getting attention whatever the cost. More importantly, they are a way for us to connect, share ideas and opinions, and try to make the world a better place, or at least talk about it. What is going to happen to social media in the future?
More and more platforms are going to come up with ways of keeping the posts and videos, as well as any personal information that belongs to users, private.
The encryption is going to step up its games, especially after what has become a seasonal data breach on Facebook. There will likely be more and more elaborate ways of signing into an account and more hoops to jump through. Just think about what you have to go through with gmail from another device.
Unfortunately, it is possible that free speech is going to be heavily censored on numerous platforms. As the community guidelines of each platform follow the political views of either the owner or the target demographic, a portion of people will always get silenced and excluded from the platform. For example, there is already heavy censorship in China regarding negative things posted about President Xi Jinping, going so far as to crack down on users who compare him to Winnie the Pooh and censoring anything Pooh-related.
Consider anti-vaxxers, flat-earthers, and numerous conspiracy theorists – there is a chance they will censor anyone disagreeing with them on their respective platform of choice. Censorship and drowning of one’s voice will be done by all political parties and by people from all walks of life, for better or worse.
VR and AR
Internet is about to become much more interactive with Generation Z getting into virtual and augmented reality. We still enjoy this tech in its early stages, but it’s only a matter of time before there are VR and AR chat rooms, games, stories, and simulations you can experience with your loved ones or perfect strangers. The experience of social media is probably going to be much more immersive, though we are willing to bet that advertising will also find a way to enter this domain and become virtually unavoidable.
Machines are learning and becoming better at predicting what we would be looking for next. It could be the next clip on YouTube, a new item on Amazon, or a funny tweet. While users are still joking about the unreliability of these predictions sometimes, it is a matter of time before the algorithms would require any input at all. That is both awesome and creepy.