Wharton MBAs Will Get You Out Of The Social Media Bubble

social media bubble

The social media bubble has many definitions but perhaps could more accurately referred to as an echo chamber. As in, we are only listening and reading to precisely what we want to hear. That could sound innocent to those who preface cat videos and YouTube mixtapes, but often in the political sense it leads to unabashed biases going unchecked.

MBA students at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania aren’t immune to the pitfalls of a social media bubble either (high GMAT scores do not prevent this, surprisingly). If anything, the ongoing cavalcade of political events stemming from some certain Wharton alum make the need to get out of the social media bubble more pressing than ever. On the heels of last year’s general election, three Wharton MBAs created PolarNews, an online newsletter with a simple caveat: the news will feature contrasting points of view.

Davis Filippell, one of the newsletters three founders, crafted the idea after the events of Brexit in the summer of 2016. “My own sphere was very one-sided both before and after, which caused a lot of surprise,” Filippell told the Daily Pennsylvanian. Filippell lived in London at the time and by the following October PolarNews had become fully-conceived alongside Matt Alexander and Mimi Bell.

“I sent that first email to the people around me to show that what you may believe as the obvious outcome is not what is being pushed through the internet and the world, so it is important to take action on it,” he told the newspaper.

The outward concern of reinforcing biases was universally shared among the three. Of course, one of the more pronounced effects of the election became the outpouring of “fake news.” While the term has been a bit bastardized by those who choose to abuse it, it doesn’t make the profound negative effects of it any less real.

“We see a lot happening in the world right now in which there is a huge potential for misinformation, and fake news is a topic that trends in all sorts of different circles,” Filippell added. “Our goal is to look through that and create something that people look forward to and count on, and also can use to make a difference.”

The hope with PolarNews, as it continues to grow, is to add even more contrasting legitimate viewpoints, considering the multitude of layers many parts of politics have.

We have this two-party system that is very entrenched in American politics, but within every party and on every issue there are a multitude of different views,” Alexander also said. “As Americans and people who live in the United States, whether citizens or not, I think that we can do better in the way we choose to talk about certain things.”

Check out and subscribe to PolarNews today and click here to read the entire Daily Pennsylvanian article from writer Nina Selipsky.

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