Social Media Algorithms and their Impact on Human Behavior

Social Media Algorithms and their Impact on Human Behavior 1

What are Social Media Algorithms?

Each time you log on to a social media platform, every interaction you make, every post you see, and every person you follow is carefully documented. All this information is then collated to develop social media algorithms. Algorithms are the mathematical formulas used by websites and social media platforms to help you navigate those sites and get the information you’re looking for.

Social Media Algorithms and their Impact on Human Behavior 2

Simply put, social media algorithms serve by curating and delivering relevant content to users based on their preferences, behavior, and actions, and the information available on the platform.

How do Social Media Algorithms Affect Human Behavior?

Social media sites have dramatically changed the way we interact with each other and the way we consume information. People log onto social media countless times to stay connected with their social circles, stay up to date on news and information, and engage in different activities. But social media algorithms influence our behavior far more than we might imagine. Here’s how:


One of the most notable ways in which social media algorithms influence our behavior is by personalizing our content feeds. Social media algorithms use complex formulas to understand our interests and preferences, and then curate content that they believe we’ll engage with. They incorporate information on our location, the type of device we use, and the time we spend on the app to customize our user experience.

Confirmation Bias

The algorithms used by social media platforms are designed to promote engagement. With this in mind, algorithms are structured to show users content that they’re interested in, and which they’ll likely respond to, as opposed to content that might challenge their existing beliefs. This can result in confirmation bias, where users are subjected to only information that aligns with their existing ideology, limiting their exposure to diverse perspectives, opinions, and interpretations.

Addictive Behavior

Social media algorithms play a significant role in encouraging addictive behavior. The way these algorithms operate enables users to be addicted to their phones, consume and share content regularly, and boost digital engagement to seek more rewards. Social media algorithms are also designed to provide momentary hits of pleasure by delivering content that users like regularly, inducing FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), and FOMO exists because social algorithms have been designed that way.

How can We Regulate Social Media Algorithm?

While social media algorithms can have both positive and negative effects, it’s essential to find a balance that ensures that platforms prioritize user wellbeing over profits. Here are some ways to regulate social media algorithms:


Transparency is essential for building trust between social media users, the platforms they use, and the algorithms that power these platforms. Social media platforms must be transparent in how they monitor user data, how this data is used to create algorithms, and how their algorithms work. By understanding precisely how algorithms curate content, users are better suited to make informed decisions about what content they engage with and why.

Understand the Problem:

Many people don’t have a clear understanding of how social media algorithms operate or the role they play in shaping our behavior. Before a solution can be determined, we need to educate ourselves on how social media algorithms work and how they affect us personally. This will be instrumental in creating policies and strategies that can genuinely change the impact of these algorithms on society.

Create Accountability:

Creating accountability means that social media platforms must be held responsible for the impact of their algorithms on user behavior. This may require creating policies and regulations around how these algorithms are created and the information that they’re allowed to use. This includes giving users the ability to access, manage, and even remove data from social media algorithms.


Social media algorithms play an essential role in shaping our digital habits and behaviors. They can influence the content that we see, the people we interact with, and the perspectives that we form. It’s imperative that social media platforms prioritize user welfare while ensuring they maintain their profitability. The regulation of social media algorithms will require addressing issues like transparency, education, and accountability. By doing so, social media platforms can create an environment where information dissemination and creation are managed in ethical and socially responsible ways. Learn more about the subject discussed in this article by visiting the recommended external website. Inside, you’ll encounter more information and an alternative perspective on the subject.!

Wish to expand your knowledge? Visit the related posts we’ve set aside for you:

Gain a better understanding with this material of interest

Discover additional information here