Media Bits and Bytes – May 30, 2023
- Ethical AI
- Love Letter to Jerry Mander
- Password Crackdown at Netflix
- Nina Jankowicz vs Fox News
- Social News on the Rocks
- Why I’m Shutting Down My Local News Outlet
- Ad Tech’s Gotta Go
- New Pick for FCC Commissioner
- Three Ways the Writers’ Strike Could End
- Cannes Winners
By Dennis Hirsch and Piers Norris Turner
The rush to deploy powerful new generative AI technologies, such as ChatGPT, has raised alarms about potential harm and misuse. The law’s glacial response to such threats has prompted demands that the companies developing these technologies implement AI “ethically.” But what, exactly, does that mean?
By Koohan Paik-Mander
Peace and Planet News
Mander’s scorn for technology was a lone voice during the heady genesis of the Bay Area tech industry. He maintained that the deceptive term “communications technology” was not at all about accommodating communications, but rather, about centralizing control. He was viewed at the time as nothing less than heretical.
By Emma Roth
Netflix is betting that a password-sharing crackdown will reverse its dwindling revenue and wavering subscriber count. The company has historically never enforced its policy of one account per household. Now, by making members pay to share their subscriptions with people who live in other homes, Netflix will cash in on all those users they’ve been missing out on for all these years, right?
By Stefano Kotsonis and Meghna Chakrabarti
Nina Jankowicz is an expert on disinformation. “Last year, when I was appointed to lead a body within the Department of Homeland Security to counter disinformation, disinformation and hate speech came for ... me and my family,” Jankowicz says. First, the onslaught came from Fox News. Then, her social media feeds were flooded with death threats.
By Mathew Ingram
Columbia Journalism Review
Does the death of BuzzFeed News really mean the end of socially powered journalism as a whole? It unquestionably suggests that roping a newsroom’s fortunes to a massive platform—one that has made it clear that it fundamentally doesn’t care about journalism—was, and remains, a mistake.
By Justin Kerr
McKinley Park News
Not only is our content being stolen, it’s then being used as the basis of products and services that directly compete against us, all the while attracting massive funding, monetization and revenue that we’ll never see. Even the thieves’ customers will be able to easily launch products that directly compete with us, built from our own content and labor. How is this fair, legal, or in any way sustainable?
By Cory Doctorow
Electronic Frontier Foundation
51% of every ad-dollar is claimed by a tech intermediary, a middleman that squats on a chokepoint between advertisers and publishers. Two companies – Google and Meta – dominate this sector, and both of these companies are “full-stack” – which is cutesy techspeak for “vertical monopoly.”
By John Eggerton
President Joe Biden has nominated Anna Gomez to fill the long-unfilled third Democratic seat on the Federal Communications Commission. Gomez is a veteran communications attorney and policy adviser who has been on the corporate and government sides of policy debates.
By Natalie Jarvey
When I caught The Good Doctor showrunner David Shore on the picket line outside Fox last week—where he was reuniting with his team of former House writers—he said, “I’ve never seen the membership so unified. Nobody wants to stay out here a day longer than we have to, but I don’t see us weakening, maybe ever.”
By Scott Roxborough
The Hollywood Reporter
Justine Triet’s French courtroom thriller Anatomy of a Fall has won the 2023 Palme d’Or for best film of the 76th Cannes International Film Festival. Triet is just the third woman director to win Cannes’ top honor, but the second in three years. Triet used her platform to protest the French government’s austerity programs, which have sparked nationwide protests.