After decades of justifying tech expansion on the basis of free speech, US policymakers threatening to ban Chinese-owned TikTok are now changing their tune. The about-face reveals their real objective: preserving the dominance of American tech capitalists.
Paris Marx hosts the Tech Won't Save Us podcast and writes Disconnect, a critical technology newsletter. He’s also the author of Road to Nowhere: What Silicon Valley Gets Wrong about the Future of Transportation.
Tech companies like Amazon and Uber are creating a society divided between the served and their servants, where the “friction” of in-person interaction is eliminated. That friction is the stuff of social connection — a world without it is nightmarish.
The “Uber Files” leak reveals the power of the company’s multimillion-dollar lobbying effort — and how it worked with governments around the world to undercut workers’ rights.
The early promises about the utopia that the internet would bring us have proven wrong. The internet can never deliver on all it’s capable of when it’s run for profit — we need a publicly owned internet.
Despite wild proposals from Uber and Elon Musk to build “the transportation of the future,” we’re not going anywhere with billionaires steering the ship.
As usual with the tech industry, cryptocurrencies weren’t just sold as a risky investment — they were framed as a social good. Now that the crash has ruined lives, those who promised societal transformation through crypto should be held accountable.
Elon Musk, the world’s richest man, has bought Twitter. Musk says he’s trying to safeguard democracy and promote free speech — but what does a megabillionaire with a history of silencing critics and retaliating against workers know about democracy?
Elon Musk’s bid to buy Twitter in the name of free speech is the latest example of his hubris. It’s not just that Elon Musk shouldn’t own Twitter — billionaires shouldn’t even exist.
Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy introduced us to a working-class kid from Queens struggling to both save his city and pay the rent. But now under Disney, the Peter Parker of Spider-Man: No Way Home has wealthy new benefactors rewriting just what it means to be a superhero.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s metaverse is no utopian vision — it’s another opportunity for Big Tech to colonize our lives in the name of profit.
The culture industry keeps churning out reboots and remakes, hoping to exploit a popular sense of nostalgia for gentler times. But tapping into nostalgia is a fundamentally conservative project, designed to arrest the future that we still desperately need to construct.
Peter Thiel’s right-wing provocations lead many to conclude that he’s an outlier in supposedly liberal Silicon Valley. In fact, as an open advocate for a world where technology supplants democracy, he’s the industry’s fullest embodiment.
The space race playing out among billionaires like Richard Branson, Jeff Bezos, and Elon Musk has little to do with science — it’s a PR-driven spectacle designed to distract us from the disasters capitalism is causing here on Earth.
Amazon’s buyout of MGM is the latest example of the culture industry’s transformation into a Big Tech monopoly. Artists, workers, and the film-watching public suffer the consequences.
Major corporations like Apple want us to believe they care about the planet and are addressing their unsustainable practices. Surprise, surprise — they don’t and they aren’t.
The new film Nomadland is a heartfelt look at the lives of itinerant Americans cast aside by the Great Recession. But it ignores how employers like Amazon are raking in profits off this new class of worker.
Jeff Bezos is stepping aside as Amazon’s CEO having made a fortune of almost $200 billion. It’s an attempt at reputation rehabilitation — but he can’t escape the legacy of exploitation he leaves behind.
Companies like Uber had a massive victory in November, when their $200 million propaganda blitz convinced voters in California to pass Proposition 22, excluding platform workers from labor protections. Their plan to entrench contractor status for workers nationwide is clear, but stopping them is still an option — and a necessity.
As tech companies tighten their grip on power, sci-fi visions of the future are proliferating. In Alex Rivera’s film Sleep Dealer, automation meets the hyper-militarization of borders, only increasing exploitation. It’s a techno-dystopia alarmingly imaginable today.
A new report shows that the world’s top 1 percent is responsible for double the emissions of the entire bottom half of the planet. The message is clear: to fight climate change, we have to fight the ruling class.