Big Tech, with its billion-dollar unicorns, has robbed us of the potential of the Internet. Fueled by the extreme shortsightedness and greed of venture capital and startups, the utopic vision of a decentralised and democratic commons has morphed into the dystopic autocracy of Silicon Valley panopticons that we call surveillance capitalism. This status quo violates our human rights, threatens our democracies, and casts doubt on the integrity of personhood itself.
Aral Balkan is a designer and programmer who has been making things with computers for the past 35 years. He’s spent the last five of those working on the problem of technologically regulating the abuses of surveillance capitalism as well as designing freedom-respecting alternatives to it. In this talk, he presents his latest thinking on how we can create alternatives to surveillance capitalism that cannot be co-opted. His suggestion is simple: Think small.
Lecture given during the ZEIT-Stiftung "EuropaCamp" at Kampnagel, Hamburg. 26.4.2019