In Episode 21, Jessica Ann talks with tech ethicist David Ryan Polgar.
Polgar digs below the surface to examine our tech use from an ethical, legal, and emotional perspective. With a background as an attorney and an educator, along with experience working with social media companies, he is able to take a Multidisciplinary approach to our evolving use of technology.
In this interview, David and Jessica discuss:
- How Technology Impacts Us from an Ethical and Emotional Perspective
- Why we lack appropriate terms for what we're even talking about. Everyone is struggling with this.
- Why our rapturous submission to digital technology has led to an atrophying of human capacities like empathy and self-reflection, and the time has come to reassert ourselves, behave like adults, and put technology in its place (h/t Sherry Turkle's Reclaiming Conversation."
- What does it mean to be human in how we communicate and at the world at large? We're often living through a filter and that filter is coming through our screen.
- How we're hooked up to the Google brain. If we all have access to it, it's not important. It's more important to step back, and have creativity and wisdom with access the information. It's more important to be creative today but we're struggling with the mass-consumption of information.
- Creativity and wisdom are seen as the ability to connect dots. Creative people take things we wouldn't think and say "let's combine that." The problem that's happening is that we're struggling with something that never ends because we of unlimited consumption. When information becomes available we tend to gobble it up.
- We need to say "Hey Facebook, make those cookies a little less delicious."
- Silicon Valley is selling us a product that we're gobbling up but we do not know the nutritional content.
- We need to allow for more moments of digestion: Don't check your phone, close the browser. This is easier said than done but we need to think of an information diet the same as we think of a food diet.
- How do we not become a robot in a world that's trying to change us into robots? As a capitalist society, every revolution has a counter-revolution.
- How and why Silicon Valley is selling us a product that we're gobbling up. And why we need to make an informed decision about the content we consume.
- Do we humans have free-will with the endless use of algorithms?
- How humanity is becoming "bot-ified" based on predictive analytics.
- How LinkedIn automates intimacy and how we have gamified relationships.
- Why social adoption is not solely focused on utility.
You can follow David on Twitter at @techethicist or visit his website here.