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Media Advisory

ATTENTION: Assignment desks; high-tech, and legal reporters

Does Internet transparency threaten our democracy? Author Evgeny Morozov speaks about the folly of smart technology

WHAT: An afternoon forum with author, columnist, and technology realist Evgeny Morozov. The event is sponsored by the Samuelson Law, Technology & Public Policy Clinic at Berkeley Law.

 

WHY: The temptation of the digital age is to fix everything—from crime and corruption to pollution and obesity—by digitally quantifying, tracking, or gamifiying behavior. But Morozov challenges us to question these solutions—are they adequate? Will technological approaches obscure the political agendas and incentives of the tech provider?

As Morozov writes: “…we must ensure that, in pursuing greater profits, our new algorithmic gatekeepers are forced to accept the idea that their culture-defining function comes with great responsibility” (New York Times 11/16/12). Morozov says technology can be a force for improvement only if we genuinely examine how and why we use it.

This event is one in a series of privacy lectures that examines the impact of technology on U.S. consumers, on government security, and on citizens’ constitutional rights.

WHEN: Monday, April 1, 4:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

WHERE: UC Berkeley School of Law, Room 105; Bancroft Way at Piedmont, Berkeley. See campus map.

WHO: Evgeny Morozov is the author of To Save Everything, Click Here: The Folly of Technological Solutionism. His previous book, The Net Delusion: The Dark Side of Internet Freedom, is a New York Times Notable Book of 2011. He is a contributing editor to The New Republic; his articles have appeared in The New York Times, Financial Times, Economist, Wall Street Journal, and more.

Commentators:

  • Jenna Burrell is a UC Berkeley assistant professor at the School of Information and author of Invisible Users: Youth in the Internet Cafes of Urban Ghana (2012);
  • Martin Jay is a UC Berkeley professor of history and author of The Virtues of Mendacity: On Lying in Politics (2010);
  • Chris Jay Hoofnagle is a lecturer in residence at Berkeley Law.

This event is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology at Berkeley Law, the UC CITRIS Data and Democracy Initiative, and the student group Boalt.org.

DETAILS:
Media are invited to attend free of charge. For more info, go here or contact Julia Tier, 510-642-4712, jtier@law.berkeley.edu.