Disinformation (with Tristan Harris and Maria Ressa)

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Over the last several years, we’ve learned the hard way that disinformation, when combined with the power and reach of social media, can radicalize, divide, and destabilize communities -- and even entire countries. In this episode, Hillary talks with social media and technology expert Tristan Harris about how we got here, and what we need to do to mitigate the influence of Big Tech on our democracy. She also speaks with award-winning Filipino-American journalist Maria Ressa about why the Philippines’ shift away from democracy and toward authoritarianism should serve as a warning to us all.

Tristan Harris spent three years as a Google Design Ethicist developing a framework for how technology should “ethically” steer the thoughts and actions of billions of people from screens. A featured subject in the Netflix documentary, The Social Dilemma, Tristan is now co-founder & president of the Center for Humane Technology, whose mission is to reverse “human downgrading” and re-align technology with humanity. He co-hosts the Center for Humane Technology's Your Undivided Attention podcast with co-founder Aza Raskin.

For her courage and work on disinformation and “fake news,” Maria Ressa was named TIME Magazine’s 2018 Person of the Year, and has also been named one of TIME’s Most Influential Women of the Century. A journalist in Asia for nearly 35 years, Maria co-founded Rappler, the top digital-only news site in the Philippines. Maria has endured constant political harassment and arrests by the Duterte government, forced to post bail eight times to stay free. In June of 2020, Maria was found guilty of Cyber Libel charges which includes a sentence of up to six years in prison. Maria is profiled in Frontline’s A Thousand Cuts, directed by Ramona Diaz, and now streaming online on pbs.org/frontline and YouTube. The film is also available to stream in the PBS Video App and on PBS Documentaries Prime Video Channel.

Full transcript here.

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