The Quantified Media Apparatus - The implications of quantification and the use of the Facebook Insights platform on the shaping/publishing of digital cultural content by media companies.
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One billion users are using Facebook on a daily basis, and as a ‘social’ medium it has changed the way in which people are consuming digital cultural content. And it is therefore the first platform to go to when media companies are distributing their digital cultural content. From this perspective, the main problem of this thesis will revolve around how the use of the Facebook Insights platform by media companies might affect the way digital cultural content is being shaped. I will examine this problem and uncover its possible implications by analysing the Facebook Insights interface and observing the practices of the media companies VICE and Sciencedump. Eventually, it comes down to a whole range of variables that are shaping the digital cultural content. It is the interplay between the so-called perceived affordances that guide user behaviour and the appropriation/interpretation by media companies that has an affect on the way digital cultural content is produced and distributed. The major implication of how these practices are established and the Facebook Insights platform functions, is it that due to the omnipresent of metrics a quantifiable content production machine is formed. Media companies are producing digital cultural content that is informed by the engagement of Facebook users in order to make sure that people click. From this point of view, I will finally conclude that it is through the quantification that the phenomenon of the ‘filter bubble’ is being reinforced.