Considering the online environment, you cannot encounter the world wide web as a set of isolated ‘individuals’. We must rather define this as a society, even though the act of browsing may be done individually. The semantic regime of the web consequently effects information management systems that are based on frequencies and ranking. The frequency of views functions as a ‘vote of confidence’, which means that user activities can and mostly will affect the given search requests (Groot, 2012). There by metadata created by interaction with the web constitutes strategic decisions, based on the social profile of the user. This so called “social protocol” (Groot, 2012) affects our behaviour and creates a space in which pre-emptive behaviour affects the content, as seen by the user. In other words: the user is aware of the fact that he or she can design his or her own convictions, in terms of representation of the content he or she sees and shares.
The effect of this behaviour takes control of future search results, which lays the foundation for any possible future results. This differs from the effects generated by analogue sources, where the user is in control of the selection of content without any algorithm influencing the results of future search questions. In the ‘analogue’ world, a network of people and institutions are influencing what content is presented, rather than a biased algorithm. The way the reader is capable to find and read analogue information is based on the availability and in so suggestive results are based on an information limit. The internet deals with this problem by presenting an infinite amount of information, but it needs to add a feature with which the user is able to find the content he or she seeks. In order to get to this content, monitoring is needed to direct to the right webpages containing the desired information. This is not limited to one of the user’s media and devices, but rather creates a network in which algorithms work as overarching mechanism, influencing the content found throughout the user’s online activity. This creates a specific online reading protocol, that differs from the offline protocol.