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Education and the dislike society: The impossibility of learning in filter bubbles

Herm-Morris, Benjamin

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As we begin to witness a new phase in the integration of digital social media platforms with educational institutions, we ought to ask how learning exchanges may be altered as a result. Looking to transformations in knowledge exchanges outside of formal education, we find that these technologies have already modified the ways in which communities engage with each other. Gerlitz and Helmond explain that the Like Economy built into all major social media platforms flattens exchanges between users to engagement metrics. With online communities increasingly isolated from each other thanks to inscrutable recommendation algorithms, the most frequent cross-community exchanges manifest in outbursts of rage, producing a so-called ‘Dislike Society’. Practitioners would rather briefly unite to tear down other ways of living than to build new ones. Within the Dislike Society, any form of knowledge that could shape new communities is lost to the governance of algorithms in what Bernard Stiegler calls ‘proletarianisation’. To re-apply knowledge to the improvement of life, as suggested by Whitehead, the attention of learners needs to be shaped in response to new technological conditions. This is best achieved within the educational institutions that now face a reorganisation by the same companies that brought us the Dislike Society.


Herm-Morris, B. (2022). Education and the dislike society: The impossibility of learning in filter bubbles. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 54(5), 502-511.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 10, 2021
Online Publication Date Jun 20, 2021
Publication Date 2022
Deposit Date Aug 20, 2021
Publicly Available Date Aug 20, 2021
Journal Educational Philosophy and Theory
Print ISSN 0013-1857
Electronic ISSN 1469-5812
Publisher Taylor and Francis Group
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 54
Issue 5
Pages 502-511


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Copyright Statement
© 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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