Simone Chambers

“Healthy democratic opinion formation relies on an open, free, and undistorted public sphere of political communication. We live in an age of big data, and it is capable of microtargeting and manipulating us. It’s algorithmic curation systematically fails to up-rank truth while corporations profit from the personal data that is collected then sold by search engines and social media platforms. Many have commented on the dangers to democracy posed by new information technologies. For the most part, those dangers are the product of intentional human action exploiting technology rather than of the technology itself. Authoritarian antidemocratic forces are building strategies to undermine the key elements of a functional democracy, and they set out to do so intentionally. Rather than authoritarian regimes directly crushing civil society and social movements, the internet has opened up new possibilities for authoritarians to thwart democracy at home and in established constitutional democracies around the world. They can effectively wreck, rather than suppress, the public sphere.”  

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