MIT Technology Review - 14 Aug 2018
How did digital technologies go from empowering citizens and toppling dictators to being used as tools of oppression and discord? This is a must-read to understand how digital technology went from an instrument promoting democracy to a weapon charged to undermine it. It offers a clear, brief review of the different stages of social media; from (1) the euphoria of discovery to (2) the audacity of hope, (3) the illusion of immunity and (4) the power of the platforms. It offers in conclusion a few recommendations to deal with the problem (reads in 8-9 min).
Published in Weekly selection 17 August 2018
Project Syndicate - 2 Aug 2018
There is a lot of food for thought in this rather contrarian short piece. The author of “China’s Crony Capitalism” argues that Xi is now coming under attack and facing the worst summer since he came to power in November 2012. A stream of bad news has left many Chinese, particularly among the elites, feeling disappointed, anxious, angry, helpless, and dissatisfied with their increasingly powerful leader. Xi won’t be overthrown, but the road ahead could well become treacherous (reads in 6-7 min).
Published in Weekly selection 4 August 2018
Foreign Affairs (metered paywall) - 10 Jul 2018
AI promises to reshape the world in several respects. One has to do with the coming competition between digital authoritarianism and liberal democracy. By allowing governments to monitor, understand, and control their citizens far more closely than ever before, AI will offer authoritarian countries a plausible alternative to liberal democracy, the first since the end of the Cold War (reads in 6-7 min).
Published in Weekly selection 14 July 2018