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Technology and society

Magda Skrzypek
Media development worker

Prague-based media development worker from Poland with a journalistic background. Previously worked on digital issues in Brussels. Piqs about digital issues, digital rights, data protection, new trends in journalism and anything else that grabs my attention.

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piqer: Magda Skrzypek
Wednesday, 20 March 2019

Team Human Against Abusive Technology

A recent episode of Team Human, a weekly podcast focused on the intersection of technology and society that strives "to amplify human connection"is a fine example of civility in public discourse. In an unfortunately rare occurrence, a live taping of the show teaches the ability to disagree and still be agreeable even in a passionate exchange of opinions. 

On one side, we have host and media theorist Douglas Rushkoff, a vocal critic of digital capitalism, whose recently released book Team Human is a rallying manifesto for a movement dedicated to stopping technology that optimizes people for economic growth. Then we have guest Roger McNamee, a venture capitalist and an early investor in both Facebook and Google, whose brand new book Zucked hopes to modify the business model that tech giants created, yet doesn't seek to upend the system altogether. Two books, two authors, two paths for change: revolution and reform, radicalism and moderation.

Although there are differences between Rushkoff and McNamee, they aren't treated as something to battle or win against. Both the host and the guest are there to listen, to learn and to work together for a higher goal of a better future (to "bust the Death Star", as McNamee calls it). They are both on Team Human. 

"Here's really good news: there are less than a million [working for tech companies]. And there are 340 million people in the US and obviously 7 billion globally, so we outnumber them. We have a lot of political power right now and there is rapidly building awareness of this. And what's really interesting, I worked super hard since I put my book out to position this as right vs wrong, as supposed to right vs left (...) There's only one right answer on these things, and these guys are on the wrong side of it (...) We have way more power than we realise in this scenario," says McNamee.

Team Human Against Abusive Technology
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