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S7 Debugger Podcast Series: Defending Democracy (and Us!) From Big Tech

For the seventh season of the Ways & Means, we hand the show over to our friends at the Debugger podcast. The series, “Defending Democracy (and Us!) from Big Tech,” explores what governments can do to hold tech companies accountable. The series is hosted by journalist Bob Sullivan. ]

For example: Johnny Ryan is the head of a group in Ireland that’s a bit like the ACLU in the U.S. He says Google’s business is a lot more than simply showing you the right advertisement at the right time.

“What it boils down to is that hundreds of billions of times a day, what everyone is watching, reading and listening to and where they are in the real world is being broadcast out to thousands of companies,” Ryan says, arguing that we should view Google’s advertising business as a huge data breach. “Not only is it the biggest data breach of all time, every day, it’s the biggest data breach we’ve ever had. And it’s repeated daily. The scale is astounding,”

The series explores what’s been tried, and what might yet be tried to rein in Big Tech’s huge power over us.

Episode 1 Too Big to Sue

Episode Page | Transcript


Episode 2 What Hasn’t Worked

Episode Page | Transcript


Episode 3: Begged and Borrowed

Episode Page | Transcript to come


Series Guests

  • Marty Abrams, Information Accountability Foundation
  • Jolynn Dellinger, Duke Law School
  • David Hoffman, Cybersecurity Professor, Duke University
  • Chris Hoofnagle, Berkeley Center for Law & Technology
  • Jane Horvath, Chief Privacy Officer, Apple
  • Francella Ochillo, Next Century Cities
  • Alexys Ogorek, Law Student, Duke University
  • Barak Richman, Duke Law School
  • Johnny Ryan, Council for Civil Liberties
  • Bobbi Spector, Federal Trade Commission
  • Kyle Taylor, The Real Facebook Oversight Board
  • Rory Van Loo, Boston University Law School
  • David Vladek, former director of the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection
  • Michael “Buz” Waitzkin, Duke University Science & Society