Tim Wu, author of The Master Switch and professor at Columbia Law School, discussed his new book, The Attention Merchants: The Epic Scramble to Get Inside Our Heads, during a conversation at the Shorenstein Center with Erie Meyer, Joan Shorenstein Fellow. Wu, whose past work also includes the FTC, Google, and Free Press, discussed the historical origins of the attention economy, how people are fighting back against the encroachment of advertising, and considerations for media and technology companies. This Shorenstein Center Speaker Series event was recorded on October 25, 2016, at Harvard Kennedy School.
Jeffrey Rosen, President & CEO of the National Constitution Center, Professor of Law at The George Washington University Law School, and a Contributing Editor of The Atlantic, delivered the ninth annual Salant Lecture on Freedom of the Press at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center on October 13, 2016. Rosen argues that Twitter, Facebook, and Google are facing increased pressure to moderate content in a way that is inconsistent with First Amendment protections—in the name of promoting civility rather than democracy. He discusses the controversy around Facebook’s removal of a Pulitzer Prize-winning photo of a naked child from the Vietnam War, problems regarding transparency in content moderation, the EU’s right to be forgotten ruling, and the challenges of online mobs and hate speech, among other topics.
Peter D. Hart, chairman of Hart Research Associates, a public opinion research firm that provides polls for NBC News and The Wall Street Journal, discussed the driving forces behind the 2016 presidential election, and the influence of voter demographics and public opinion on the race. Hart also discussed down-ballot races, polling, and what to expect after Election Day, among other topics. This Shorenstein Center Speaker Series event was recorded on October 19, 2016, at Harvard Kennedy School.
Amy Walter, national editor of The Cook Political Report, discussed possible outcomes of the 2016 presidential and down-ballot races, and what may lie ahead after Election Day. Walter, who appears on NBC’s "Meet the Press" and "PBS NewsHour," also discussed the role of voter turnout, Senate races in Missouri and North Carolina, her approach to political analysis, and what to expect during the lame-duck session of Congress, among many other topics. This Shorenstein Center Speaker Series event was recorded on October 18, 2016, at Harvard Kennedy School.
Joy-Ann Reid, host of MSNBC’s "AM Joy" discussed the role of race within the Republican and Democratic parties, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the need for the U.S. to reckon with its history, in a discussion with Shorenstein Center Director Nicco Mele. Reid, who is the author of the 2015 book, Fracture: Barack Obama, the Clintons, and the Racial Divide, and former managing editor of theGrio.com, also discussed why demographics favor a Clinton win and what to expect from a Clinton presidency, the generational divide among African Americans, and conflicts within both parties, among many other topics. This Shorenstein Center Speaker Series event was recorded on October 11, 2016, at Harvard Kennedy School.
Zeynep Tufekci, a New York Times opinion writer who focuses on the social impact of technology, discussed the advantages and shortcomings of the use of technology in protest movements. Tufekci, who is also an associate professor in the School of Information and Library Science at UNC, and a faculty associate at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard, has studied protests and social movements around the world to observe their culture, decision-making processes, and the role of the internet and social media. This Shorenstein Center Speaker Series event was recorded October 4, 2016, at Harvard Kennedy School.
Cathy O’Neil, data scientist and author of the new book Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy, discussed how some algorithms can have an invisible, but important and destructive impact on people’s lives. Decisions about employment, criminal sentencing, and many other areas are now influenced by algorithms and big data. This is a serious problem, argues O’Neil, as there is little transparency about how these systems are constructed or used. This Shorenstein Center Speaker Series event was recorded October 4, 2016, at Harvard Kennedy School.