Should Kids Take Internet Ed?

Your driver license. A symbol of freedom. A quintessential moment in a teenager’s development and one of the few remaining rites of passage. The automobile is also one of the most deadly things mankind has ever invented. It’s no surprise that a test is required to operat a multi-ton projectile. The internet, it turns out, […]

Digital Double Agents: Is the Troll Hunter a Troll Herself?

Traditional media was very critical of social media’s involvement in election interference during the 2016 presidential campaign. While there are plenty of worthy criticisms, the forest has been lost for the trees when it comes to state sponsored disinformation campaigns. For some reason, the traditional media acts as if it is immune. But when words […]

Burning Digital Books and the Fight over Online Ideology

Is social media ripping apart the fabric of society? Fears of the fringe and “the other” have prompted some to demand social platforms remove uncomfortable ideas, hoping that the very algorithms that entrap us will protect us from ourselves. The idea of uniting humanity through a global network is turning out to be more dystopian […]

Post-truth Marketing in Synthetic Reality

Reality is shifting, and no one understands what’s real anymore. A new version of reality has emerged and it’s manifesting itself in strange phenomena such as Frye Fest, fake news and synthetic influencers. This version of reality – the synthetic layer – sits on top of our senses and language, and has emerged thanks to […]

The Reddit Protests and China’s Control of American Culture

The “front page of the Internet” is the latest battle ground in the fight over control of global culture. Chinese tech giant Tencent recently invested $150m in Reddit. This investment sparked virtual protests and outrage across the social platform, with images of Tiananmen Square flooding Reddit’s front page. The threat of Chinese censorship was feeling […]

Hacking Human Laziness with Internet Heuristics

Admit it. Humans are lazy. And easily tricked. Our brain, in its never-ending quest to preserve glucose, seeks shortcuts. If our brains didn’t do this, we would be paralyzed by every mundane choice. These shortcuts are known as heuristics, and heuristics are the cornerstone of marketing manipulation.