When it comes to AI and data regulation, Europe often leads the way. But the US Federal Trade Commission could spur a major shift on behalf of ordinary people against corporate interests — so long as there’s the political will.
Nick Couldry is a professor of media communications and social theory at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Since 2017 he has been faculty associate at Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society.
Since the start of the pandemic it’s become common to suggest that education will have to adapt to a “new normal,” with increased use of online platforms. But private tech firms risk having an oversized say in what the “new normal” is — ignoring the needs expressed by teachers and learners themselves.
In recent years, firms like Google and Facebook have used the Global South as a test bed for new and unregulated forms of data collection. Faced with coronavirus, the same mechanisms are being rolled out across the world — with for-profit data collection becoming increasingly central to states’ management of their welfare systems.