The Trouble with Big Tech

A decade-long marriage of convenience is strained—particularly for those who have provided platforms like Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Twitter with mountains of free content and/or personal data, only to be sold out.

222 items
Posted by Michael Grossman in The Trouble with Big Tech
"We want to change the way the internet enables the spread of news and information so it serves the public good over corporate and political interests. The business models of Big Tech companies – data aggregators, social platforms and online media – expose the internet to unprecedented levels of hate speech, disinformation and polarisation. We can stop this and ensure these companies work for democracy rather than against it... We must reset the rules and standards for the products and services that are at the centre of these issues. And we must raise public expectations about how the internet can better support democracy, by explaining what’s wrong, exposing why it’s happening and offering solutions. We believe the internet can once again become a force for good, not a marketplace for manipulation by the highest bidder."
reset.tech

Reset

Resetting the internet for democracy
Posted by Michael Grossman in The Trouble with Big Tech

Vox offers up their mea culpa on ad-targeting. Candid and useful.

If you logged into our network through social media we also have access to portions of your public social profile, such as your name, email address, and photo. We use this information to build your account and authenticate you as a user. We collect other analytic information from social media sites and combine it with analytic data from internet behemoth Google to get a demographic picture of who you are so that we can make our site better but, primarily, to serve you ads. We could, for example, sell an ad to Glossier that would land in front of wealthy women in their 30s who frequently purchase cosmetics. …. If you click to play an Open Sourced video on our YouTube channel, you’re also subject to Google’s privacy policy. And if you happen to be signed in with a Google account like Gmail, Google can collect even more info.

vox.com

Privacy policies: How websites track you, explained

Vox has a pretty typical privacy policy. That doesn’t make it great.
Posted by Sarah Zengel in The Trouble with Big Tech

…the move also illustrates the fact that big tech companies aren’t just under pressure from lawmakers and government regulators — they’re also fighting each other.

vox.com

Apple, Facebook fight over new advertising rules coming to iOS 14

Apple and Facebook are fighting again. This time it’s about ads and privacy.
Shared by Phil Kennedy in The Trouble with Big Tech
Posted by Phil Kennedy in Factr Blogging & Social
WIRED

How Facebook and Other Sites Manipulate Your Privacy Choices

Social media platforms repeatedly use so-called dark patterns to nudge you toward giving away more of your data.
facebook
Shared by Phil Kennedy in The Trouble with Big Tech
Posted by Phil Kennedy in Factr Blogging & Social
TechCrunch

Travel startups cry foul over what Google’s doing with their data

As the antitrust drumbeat continues to pound on tech giants, with Reuters reporting comments today from the U.S. Justice…
Shared by Phil Kennedy in The Trouble with Big Tech
Posted by Sarah Zengel in Factr Blogging & Social
bbc.com

Facebook 'danger to public health' warns report

A study from an activist group suggests health misinformation was viewed 3.8 billion times in the past year.
Empty placeholderD Y
Posted by David Yates in The Trouble with Big Tech
(edited)

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/oct/10/power-silicon-valley-climate-crisis-big-tech-profitable

theguardian.com

In its insatiable pursuit of power, Silicon Valley is fuelling the…

Big tech isn’t interested in a better world, just a more profitable one. We need to break its stranglehold on us, says Guardian…
Empty placeholderD Y
Posted by David Yates in The Trouble with Big Tech
(edited)

Excellent article in Harpers by Barry C Lynn - a strong advocate for openness in society presents a pretty compelling argument to break up big tech.

harpers.org

The Big Tech Extortion Racket

How Google, Amazon and Facebook control our lives....
Posted by Chris van der Walt in The Trouble with Big Tech
Interesting to see whether this will end up being enforced.
afr.com

'Only fair': Facebook, Google ordered to pay up on news

Facebook and Google will be forced by the federal government to pay Australian media companies for publishing their news stories…
Posted by Michael Grossman in The Trouble with Big Tech
nytimes.com

Big Tech Could Emerge From Coronavirus Crisis Stronger Than Ever

Amazon is hiring aggressively to meet customer demand. Traffic has soared on Facebook and YouTube. And cloud computing has become…
Posted by Chris van der Walt in The Trouble with Big Tech
Posted by Chris van der Walt in The Trouble with Big Tech

He seemed at least as concerned about the perception of privacy as with privacy itself.

wired.com

Inside Mark Zuckerberg's Lost Notebook

In the early days of Facebook, Zuck kept his plans for world domination in handwritten journals. He destroyed them. But a few…
Posted by Michael Grossman in The Trouble with Big Tech
nytimes.com

Opinion | You Are Now Remotely Controlled

Surveillance capitalists control the science and the scientists, the secrets and the truth.
Posted by Chris van der Walt in The Trouble with Big Tech
(edited)

"Schmidt continued: "Our business is highly measurable. We know that if you spend X dollars on ads, you’ll get Y dollars in revenues." At Google, Schmidt maintained, you pay only for what works.

Karmazin was horrified. He was an old fashioned advertising man, and where he came from, a Super Bowl ad cost three million dollars. Why? Because that’s how much it cost. What does it yield? Who knows.

"I’m selling $25bn of advertising a year," Karmazin said. "Why would I want anyone to know what works and what doesn’t?"

Leaning on the table, hands folded, he gazed at his hosts and told them: "You’re fucking with the magic."

Posted by Michael Grossman in The Trouble with Big Tech
nytimes.com

America’s Top Foundations Bankroll Attack on Big Tech

Major nonprofits and other organizations have pledged millions of dollars toward groups trying to build a modern trust-busting…
Posted by Chris van der Walt in The Trouble with Big Tech
CNBC

EU starts new preliminary probe into Google and Facebook's use of data

This is the second time that Europe's competition authority has looked at how companies deal with users' data.
Posted by Chris van der Walt in The Trouble with Big Tech
“If a user has decided to limit Facebook’s access to his or her location, Facebook should respect these privacy choices,” the senators, members of the Judiciary Committee, wrote in the letter to Zuckerberg. “The language in the blog post, however, indicates that Facebook may continue to collect location data despite user preferences, even if the user is not engaging with the app, and Facebook is simply deducing the user’s location from information about his or her internet connection. Given that most mobile devices are connected to the internet nearly all the time, whether through a cellular network or a Wi-Fi connection, this practice would allow Facebook to collect user location data almost constantly, irrespective of the user’s privacy preferences. Users who have selected a restrictive location services option could reasonably be under the misimpression that their selection limits all of Facebook’s efforts to extract location information.”
CNBC

Senators want Zuckerberg to explain why Facebook still tracks your…

Sens. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., and Chris Coons, D-Del., asked how Facebook tracks users' locations under restricted settings.
Posted by Chris van der Walt in The Trouble with Big Tech
From July. "In Singer v. Facebook, Inc.—a lawsuit filed in the Northern District of California alleging that Facebook has been telling advertisers that it can "reach" more people than actually exist in basically every major metropolitan area—the plaintiffs quote former Facebook employees, understandably identified only as Confidential Witnesses, as stating that Facebook's "Potential Reach" statistic was a "made-up PR number" and "fluff." Also, that "those who were responsible for ensuring the accuracy ‘did not give a shit.'" Another individual, "a former Operations Contractor with Facebook, stated that Facebook was not concerned with stopping duplicate or fake accounts.""
aarongreenspan.com

Mark Zuckerberg's Ponzi Scheme

Congress and the FTC brought a knife to a gun fight.
Posted by Chris van der Walt in The Trouble with Big Tech
"Technology companies apparently see financial services as a way to gain new users and collect valuable information about them. "
MIT Technology Review

Now Google wants to get into banking too

Google Pay users will soon able to open checking accounts with it
Posted by Michael Grossman in The Trouble with Big Tech
Richard Reisman writes: Filters are central to the function of Facebook, Google, and Twitter. As Ferguson observes, there are issues of homophily, filter bubbles, echo chambers, and fake news, and spoofing that are core to whether these networks make us smart or stupid, and whether we are easily manipulated to think in certain ways. Why do we not mandate that platforms be opened to user-selectable filtering algorithms (and/or human curators)? The major platforms can control their core services, but could allow users to select separate filters that interoperate with the platform. Let users control their filters, whether just by setting key parameters, or by substituting pluggable alternative filter algorithms. (This would work much like third party analytics in financial market data systems.) Greater competition and transparency would allow users to compare alternative filters and decide what kinds of content they do or do not want. It would stimulate innovation to create new kinds of filters that might be far more useful and smart. For example, I have proposed strategies for filters that can help counter filter bubble effects by being much smarter about how people are exposed to views that may be outside of their bubble, doing it in ways that they welcome and want to think about. My post, Filtering for Serendipity -- Extremism, "Filter Bubbles" and "Surprising Validators" explains the need, and how that might be done. The key idea is to assign levels of authority to people based on the reputational authority that other people ascribe to them (think of it as RateRank, analogous to Google's PageRank algorithm). This approach also suggests ways to create smart serendipity, something that could be very valuable as well. The "wisdom of the crowd" may be a misnomer when the crowd is an undifferentiated mob, but, I propose seeking the wisdom of the smart crowd -- first using the crowd to evaluate who is smart, and then letting the wisdom of the smart sub-crowd emerge, in a cyclic, self-improving process (much as Google's algorithm improves with usage, and much as science is open to all, but driven by those who gain authority, temporary as that may be).
Loading…
Contributors (6)
224 items
Tags (32)
60 items