What if… social media firms paid us?

Exploitation by tech firms is not inevitable, suggests Vanessa Baird.

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NI 516 - The dirt on waste - November, 2018
Photo: Alex Mateo/Alamy

Hall of Infamy: Elon Musk

The high-tech 'snake-oil salesman', gets a grilling.

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NI 516 - The dirt on waste - November, 2018

Will new laws tame the tech giants?

The backlash against social media titans is in full swing. But are moves to bring them to heel, including new privacy laws, appropriate? Mike Morel investigates.

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NI 513 - A better media is possible - June, 2018
Facebook’s all-powerful Mark Zuckerberg dodged awkward questions, citing unfamiliarity with the law.Photo: Aaron Bernstein / Reuters

Who elected Facebook?

We’re increasingly relying on social media companies to act like governments and censor dubious content. Jillian York on the failures of this approach – and how to fix it.

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NI 513 - A better media is possible - June, 2018

The selfish giants

So many voices online. Surely that means more diversity and media democracy? Not really, explains Laura Basu.

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NI 513 - A better media is possible - June, 2018
Illustrations: Kate Charlesworth

Blueprint for a better media

There is no one magic remedy – but lots of strategies. Vanessa Baird writes.

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NI 513 - A better media is possible - June, 2018
Catch! Will delivery drones really get aid to those who need it most?Photo: Stephen Lam/Reuters

The rise of the cyber-humanitarians

Aid-by-drone, what’s not to like? Plenty, as Nick Dowson explains.

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NI 511 - Humanitarianism under attack - April, 2018
These three Yemeni girls are among the 3.1 million people displaced by the war. They stand by the shredded remains of their tents in Abs settlement, which is regularly damaged by passing sandstorms.Photo: Giles Clarke, UN OCHA / Getty Images

Who cares?

Hazel Healy investigates the challenges facing 21st century humanitarian action.

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NI 511 - Humanitarianism under attack - April, 2018
All that glistens: Silicon Valley lights up as night descends.Photo: Alamy

Plutocrats and paupers

If job-killing robots will play a big role in our future, inequality could get turbo-charged. The counter-proposals on the table barely scratch the surface, argues Nick Dowson.

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NI 507 - Humans vs robots - November, 2017
China leads in industrial robots. Estimates for select countries/regions, in thousands of units.Source: nin.tl/UNCTADrobots

When the Foxbots muscle in

Industrial robots are being put to work on a massive scale in China. Taking the case of electronics giant Foxconn, Jenny Chan considers what an automated future holds in store for human workers.

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NI 507 - Humans vs robots - November, 2017
Woof in boots: a robotic dog provides diversion and companionship to a woman in a nursing home.Photo: Dmitri Alexander/National Geographic/Getty Images

Building the future, living in the past?

Robots aren’t likely to replace postal workers in Japan, but they may soon be looking after grandma – or sharing the bed. Christopher Simons explores some of their unique impacts.

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NI 507 - Humans vs robots - November, 2017

Killer robots

We urgently need to slam the brakes on automated violence. Noel Sharkey dispels some myths about the newest arms race. Illustrations by Simon Kneebone.

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NI 507 - Humans vs robots - November, 2017
Photo: Alan Levine

Audrey Watters: ‘AI is ideological’

Think of computer code as a new and powerful accomplice to legal code – the rules by which society finds itself governed. Who gets to enforce it? asks Audrey Watters.

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NI 507 - Humans vs robots - November, 2017
Robocop for real, a police robot makes its debut in Dubai, May 2017. It will help citizens report crimes and answer parking ticket queries, rather than make arrests. 25 per cent of the Dubai police force will be robotic by 2030. Photo: Giuseppe Cacace/AFP/Getty Images

The age of disruption

Technology is changing society at breakneck speed but considerations of human impacts lag far behind. Dinyar Godrej sketches out some of the key political battles ahead.

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NI 507 - Humans vs robots - November, 2017
Arun Ghandi.Photo: Dimitri Koutsomytis

‘When people are tired of exploitation, they resort to violence’

Mahatma Gandhi’s grandson, Arun Gandhi, speaks to Danielle Batist about technology, Trump, and anger as a gift.

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NI 506 - Brazil's soft coup - October, 2017
Illustration: Carol Del Angel/Alamy Stock Photo

Blinded by 'technology'

For all the fancy packaging, many of our gadgets have nothing to do with capitalist success stories. Bob Hughes explains.

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NI 497 - Peace in Colombia? Hope and fears - November, 2016
Photo: B Christopher/Alamy Stock Photo

Beating the digital titans

You can take action at a practical and technological level – and a political one.

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NI 494 - Smiley-faced monopolists - July, 2016
An SMS alert tells recipients of aid – in countries like Kenya – to collect the cash donated from a local mobile money agent.Photo: Ton Koene/PA Images

Helping in two clicks

Why bother with aid agencies? To ‘do good’ all you need is a phone and Google Maps. Amy Hall takes a closer look at the rising trend in ‘direct giving’.

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NI 494 - Smiley-faced monopolists - July, 2016
Students in Hyderabad protest against Facebook. The yellow sign reads: ‘Defend net neutrality’.Photo: Mahesh Kumar/AP Photo

No, Mr Zuckerberg

Few can resist the tech titans. Prabir Purkayastha tells the story of Indians who went into battle against Facebook, for freedom – and won.

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NI 494 - Smiley-faced monopolists - July, 2016
Illustration by Livio Fania

Can search engine rankings swing elections?

Research psychologist Robert Epstein on how the new technologies invisibly shape public opinion – and what we must do about it.

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NI 494 - Smiley-faced monopolists - July, 2016
Whether it's done by secret police or computer algorithms, being stripped of privacy is fundamentally dehumanizing.Photo: Newarpp/Thinkstock

I spy with my little algorithm

Everybody wants your private data. Bruce Schneier on how surveillance has become the business model of the internet.

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NI 494 - Smiley-faced monopolists - July, 2016

FACTS – Internet giants

This month's fact spread presents details about the internet and the corporate giants who monopolize it.

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NI 494 - Smiley-faced monopolists - July, 2016
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg  (centre) and friends play with virtual reality gear at a high-level gathering earlier this year.Photo: Kay Nietfield/Reuters

Smiley-faced monopolists

Does it matter that Google, Facebook and Amazon are so successful? Vanessa Baird examines what their domination means for all of us.

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NI 494 - Smiley-faced monopolists - July, 2016
Semantically engineered crops

Semantically engineered crops

Louise Sales reports on word games in the GMO industry.

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NI 492 - Technology justice - May, 2016

Articles in this category displayed as a table:

Article title From magazine Publication date
The dirt on waste November, 2018
The dirt on waste November, 2018
A better media is possible June, 2018
A better media is possible June, 2018
A better media is possible June, 2018
A better media is possible June, 2018
Humanitarianism under attack April, 2018
Humanitarianism under attack April, 2018
Humans vs robots November, 2017
Humans vs robots November, 2017
Humans vs robots November, 2017
Humans vs robots November, 2017
Humans vs robots November, 2017
Humans vs robots November, 2017
Brazil's soft coup October, 2017
Peace in Colombia? Hope and fears November, 2016
Smiley-faced monopolists July, 2016
Smiley-faced monopolists July, 2016
Smiley-faced monopolists July, 2016
Smiley-faced monopolists July, 2016
Smiley-faced monopolists July, 2016
Smiley-faced monopolists July, 2016
Smiley-faced monopolists July, 2016
Technology justice May, 2016
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