World Without Mind: The Existential Threat of Big Tech - Franklin Foer
Adding his voice to other compelling critiques of present-day technology, Franklin Foer passionately and deftly goes after Google, Facebook, Amazon, and Apple for threatening our culture and individuality. He warns that these technology giants are doing nothing less than “reordering the production and consumption of knowledge” and becoming “the most powerful gatekeepers the world has ever known.” In World Without Mind: The Existential Threat of Big Tech (Penguin Press, $27), Foer recounts the rise of the biggest tech players and examines how their vast efforts at data profiling and media control have come to influence much of what we do and think. To illustrate the difficulties of maintaining a cultural institution in the digital age, Foer writes as well about his own ill-fated experience at the New Republic, where he clashed with a new owner whose wealth derived from Facebook stock and who sought to turn what had been a little magazine into an engine of considerable social media traffic. Foer also offers some prescriptions, both large and small, for lessening the dangers he perceives.