When it comes to snake oil, it goes without saying that 'wariness' should be our collective middle name. Advertising bombards us with disingenuously seductive messages, and although we are not unaware of the tricks, misinformation and social engineering involved, it is unquestionably effective. For example, I've written previously about my sudden need to own a particular brand of knife which was caused by advertising.
I'm relatively immune to this kind of snake oil. Aware of the subtle messages and appeals to my emotions, I've learned to resist the push of advertisers. However, I've recently caught myself being sucked in by a different mode of attack.
If you're familiar with Ray Bradbury's sublimely prescient novel Fahrenheit 451, you may quickly gain some sense of what I'm about to confess.
For many people in the 21st century, social media platforms have become the primary source of information, entertainment, and the demon spawn of the two: infotainment. At the top of your Facebook page you will see this icon: