10 stories this week (w/e 07 Mar)

2:30-min read

Hello from 20 Minutes into the Future. Welcome to our weekend complement to the normal weekly commentary. Below you’ll find 10 links to stories that also take a critical look at how technology is shaping our lives today.

⓵ Maria Farrell on the “ethics transformation” of tech bros like Tristan Harris: “I wish all these guys well. I also wish that the many, exhausted activists who didn’t take money from Google or Facebook could have even a quarter of the attention, status and authority the Prodigal Techbro assumes is his birth-right.”

⓶ Protocol asks who’s tougher on tech — Biden or Sanders. Bernie by a country mile. As we’ve discussed before Sanders and Warren were really strong on tech.

⓷ Ready for another terrible story on Clearview? The rich were using it as a toy long before it was a tool for law enforcement and corporations.

⓸ Tax dodgers gonna tax dodge.

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⓹ From group chats to close friends to finstas the tactics we use to avoid oversharing on social media.

⓺ Reddit is hot garbage but there are brave souls fighting the good fight against propaganda on the platform.

⓻ “According to research from the Pew Research Center, a whopping 49% out of a group of 979 technology experts believe that technology will fundamentally weaken democracy by 2030. Many of these experts, who include technologists, business leaders, and researchers, were particularly concerned that democratized access to information—the great aspiration and possibility of the internet—is being weaponized to destabilize democratic institutions by encouraging mistrust and engendering chaos.”

⓼ A right-wing Republican mega-donor has taken control of 4% of Twitter and wants to force Jack Dorsey out. Presumably to roll back recent policies against political ads and harassment.

Sick and tired of big tech behaving badly? 20 Minutes into the Future is about holding the bastards to account. One way we can do that is by spreading the word of their misdeeds.


⓽ Another study that points to YouTube as an engine of radicalisation.

⓾ Facebook London announces on Friday that because of Coronavirus it will close until… Monday. Truly Mark Zuckerberg is the Dowager Duchess of Silicon Valley.

Dig deeper with these stories from 20 Minutes into the Future:

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20 Minutes into the Future is a critical look at how technology is shaping our lives today. And what actions we can take for a better tomorrow. If you're not already a subscriber and found this newsletter worth your while then please sign up.

My name is Daniel Harvey and I write 20 Minutes into the Future. I’m a product designer and have written for Fast Company, Huffington Post, The Drum, & more. If you're pissed about the current state of tech and want to see us do better then you’ve found a kindred spirit.

You can email me at daniel.harvey@gmail.com or follow me on Twitter @dancharvey.