Archive

Are We Living Inside an Ethical (and Kind) Machine?

This is a moment to ask as we make the plan­et dig­i­tal, as we total­ly envel­op our­selves in the com­put­ing envi­ron­ment that we’ve been build­ing for the last hun­dred years, what kind of dig­i­tal plan­et do we want? Because we are at a point where there is no turn­ing back, and get­ting to eth­i­cal deci­sions, val­ues deci­sions, deci­sions about democ­ra­cy, is not some­thing we have talked about enough nor in a way that has had impact.

Sleepwalking into Surveillant Capitalism, Sliding into Authoritarianism

We have increas­ing­ly smart, sur­veil­lant per­sua­sion archi­tec­tures. Architectures aimed at per­suad­ing us to do some­thing. At the moment it’s click­ing on an ad. And that seems like a waste. We’re just click­ing on an ad. You know. It’s kind of a waste of our ener­gy. But increas­ing­ly it is going to be per­suad­ing us to sup­port some­thing, to think of some­thing, to imag­ine some­thing.

AI Threats to Civil Liberties and Democracy

In a world of con­flict­ing val­ues, it’s going to be dif­fi­cult to devel­op val­ues for AI that are not the low­est com­mon denom­i­na­tor.

Online Platforms as Human Rights Arbiters

What does it mean for human rights pro­tec­tion that we have large cor­po­rate interests—the Googles, the Facebooks of our time—that con­trol and gov­ern a large part of the online infra­struc­ture?

Holding To Account

I’m glad those social net­works pro­vide those ser­vices. I think it’s impor­tant for the dia­logue to hap­pen that way. But it can’t be the only way for us to have pub­lic dis­course. Online, we only have these spaces that are owned by pri­vate com­pa­nies. We don’t have pub­lic parks.

Eleanor Saitta at The Conference 2015

What I’m talk­ing about here is not what we need to do cul­tur­al­ly or polit­i­cal­ly, it’s not the roots of online harass­ment. It’s the design tools that we can use to shape the envi­ron­ments that peo­ple inter­act in to reduce the impact.

Katherine Cross at The Conference 2015

Simply put, anonymi­ty does not cause harass­ment. It does play a role, but it’s much much more com­pli­cat­ed than most peo­ple have made it out to be. The rea­son that this is impor­tant to under­stand is because it’s hav­ing a prac­ti­cal impact on the world right now.