Options Techtonic with Mark Hurst: Playlist from July 22, 2019 Options

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Conversations with creators and thinkers who are charting the way forward in a tech-saturated society. Tech, community, video games, and whatever else is next.

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Options July 22, 2019: Showdown between Big Tech & democracy - who will win?

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This week: the showdown between Big Tech and democracy. Who will win?!

This week, highlights of Big Tech executives getting grilled in Washington last week. And as a bonus, we'll hear about Elon Musk's new implantable chip that he wants to put in your brain to control your muscles. (NOT A JOKE, SORRY)

Side note: In honor of the moon landing 50th: Here's the Techtonic interview with Christopher Potter, author of "The Earth Gazers" - his book about the space program and the first photo of Earth taken from space. From the Feb 5, 2018 episode.

Hearings last week:

• 1. House hearing on Big Tech monopolies - including Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Apple (July 16, 2019): House Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law: Online Platforms and Market Power - Video here, featuring Nate Sutton Associate General Counsel, Competition, Amazon; and Adam Cohen, Director of Economic Policy, Google. (See also the chair, Representative David Cicilline, from RI, interviewed on NPR (June 6) about Google.)

• 2. Senate hearing on Google (July 16, 2019): Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution: Google and Censorship through Search Engines - Video here. Features Karan Bhatia, Vice President for Government Affairs & Public Policy, Google; Andy Parker, Father of Alison Parker, and Dr. Robert Epstein, past guest on July 30, 2018 Techtonic (and included in the July 22, 2018 show as well).

• 3. Senate hearing on Facebook's Libra (July 16, 2019): Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, "Examining Facebook’s Proposed Digital Currency and Data Privacy Considerations" - Video here.

• 4. Congressional briefing on Facebook's Libra (July 16, 2019): Video of Matt Stoller at Congressional Briefing on Facebook’s “Libra” Cryptocurrency. See also Stoller's "Big" newsletter (July 17) on When Facebook's Bill Lumbergh Tries to Start a Currency.

• 5. House hearing on Facebook's Libra (July 17, 2019): House Committee on Financial Services Hearing: Examining Facebook’s Proposed Cryptocurrency and Its Impact on Consumers, Investors, and the American Financial System - Video here. See also the transcript of the Ocasio-Cortez exchange with David Marcus... as well as this: Facebook's plan for cryptocurrency should set alarm bells ringing (The Guardian, July 21) ... and just posted today, Facebook Is a New Form of Power (New Republic, July 22): "Yes, it's more powerful than most companies. But it's not quite like a government, either." ... and Facebook Crypto Plan Draws Fresh Fury From House Democrats (Bloomberg, July 17).

- - -

Check out techtonic.fm for recent Techtonic interviews and Little Slice of Tech Pie segments.

PODCAST: Subscribe to the Techtonic podcast

Artist Track Album Images Approx. start time
  A showdown between Big Tech and democracy: who will win? Mark Hurst plays highlights of Big Tech executives getting grilled in Washington last week.
Tomas Dvorak  Game Boy Tune   Options Machinarium Soundtrack 
  Mark's intro    
  David Cicilline vs. Amazon       0:12:46 (Pop‑up)
  David Cicilline vs. Google       0:18:34 (Pop‑up)
  Andy Parker vs. YouTube/Google       0:22:44 (Pop‑up)
  Sen. Hirono vs. YouTube/Google       0:31:29 (Pop‑up)
  Dr. Robert Epstein vs. Google       0:39:34 (Pop‑up)
  Sen. Josh Hawley vs. Google       0:42:08 (Pop‑up)
  Matt Stoller vs. Facebook's Libra       0:47:26 (Pop‑up)
Andy Rehfeldt  Can't Touch This / Tiny Dancer (Andy Rehfeldt mashup)   Options     0:56:03 (Pop‑up)

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Listener comments!

Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:00pm ultradamno:

Hello Mark! Techtrebellumnaries!
Avatar 6:00pm geezerette:

Eeeeek! in advance.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:00pm ultradamno:

Techtal Lobers?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:01pm listener james from westwood:

Evening, Mark and all!
Avatar 6:02pm herb.nyc:

I like mark hurst, on wfmu he is first
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm ultradamno:

Finally, monkeys can control computers with their minds! We had all been clamoring for it!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm chresti:

Hi Mark and Techtonia!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:03pm Ken From Hyde Park:

Hello, Mark and Techtographers!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:04pm coelacanth∅:

Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:04pm chris:

hi, Mark and folks. speaking of trans-humanism, this is a pump that will keep your blood flowing even after you die - stanfordhealthcare.org...
Avatar 6:05pm Bas NL:

Mark! BigTectonici!
Avatar 6:06pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

...oh is that all...
Avatar 6:07pm Bas NL:

I think thereby i pay.
Avatar 6:07pm herb.nyc:

3 hearings on July 16, but will it fix theengs
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:07pm queems:

alright i'm ready
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:08pm Ike:

English rom-com joke... GROOOOOOOOAN
Avatar 6:08pm herb.nyc:

elon musk is the chaser, can he be more baser?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:08pm chresti:

That was the day my car wouldn't start, last Tuesday
Avatar 6:09pm geezerette:

Mark, we've been in dystopia for awhile now.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:10pm chris:

you're going to arouse the ire of the 'no politics' crowd here. but i'm sure many of us have your back.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:11pm queems:

except for the supreme court weeeeeeeeeeeeeee
Avatar 6:11pm herb.nyc:

man is it very frustrating, kinda like 31 months of constipating
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:11pm Ken From Hyde Park:

Yesterday's low point is today's ceiling, with those people.
Avatar 6:11pm geezerette:

Can't count on anything anymore.
Avatar 6:12pm Fredericks:

Don't we vote with our dollars. And attention?
Avatar 6:12pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

That Bernie guy is asserting it ain't D.C. calls the shots - it's Wall St.
...& many say - triangulate w/ Silicon Valley...maybe younger ones more...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:12pm chris:

a government that protects its citizens? sounds like socialism! (tee-hee)
Avatar 6:13pm Fredericks:

Socialism is organized compassion--Billy Bragg.
Avatar 6:15pm geezerette:

I feel your pain.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:16pm coelacanth∅:

except all the assholes making the wrong choice affect the people of this country and world who actually do want the freedom to think for themselves and not be oppressed by gluttonous selfishness.
Avatar 6:16pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

Love it Fredericks.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:16pm chresti:

Amazon "Plain Wrap" brand
Avatar 6:16pm geezerette:

Ha ha,"Thank you for the question."
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:17pm queems:

this guy gets it
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:17pm ultradamno:

Thank you, thank you for the question, to ignore the question let me say...
Avatar 6:17pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

Impressive Mr. Cicilline.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:18pm Carmichael:

This question is a fine question as far as questions go.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:18pm listener james from westwood:

Cicilline received $12,700 from Amazon for 2019–2020: www.opensecrets.org...
Avatar 6:18pm geezerette:

Ultra, exactly. Exasperating to say the least.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:18pm queems:

i like how this guy is like doubling tripling quadrupling down
Avatar 6:19pm geezerette:

God, the arrogance.
Avatar 6:19pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

@listener jfw: ...D'oh!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:20pm Ken From Hyde Park:

He keeps reciting the same cue card!
Avatar 6:20pm geezerette:

queems, yep, ugh.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:21pm queems:

we need to bring fat taft back from the dead to bust these trusts
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:21pm chresti:

That's a spit in the bucket, for Amzon @james
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:22pm VincentNifigance:

I’m not looking for products or services on Google. That’s the problem, I’m looking for information.
  6:23pm Listener Robert:

Did he just say, "Our goal is to provide you with disinformation as soon as possible"?
Avatar 6:23pm geezerette:

"What I CAN say...".
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:23pm listener james from westwood:

It's easy for them to sprinkle everyone. They're not even rounding errors. It's like the Mob greasing folks just as an opening howdy in case greater services are needed. But to the legislators it's nearly irresistible money.
Avatar 6:24pm Bas NL:

Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:24pm coelacanth∅:

the general public can only blame themselves. scamazon is just another group of pigs out of countless number of pigs. if this world becomes a version of the one depicted in the book "1984" it's solely because the masses have enabled it.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:24pm queems:

lol ted cruz
Avatar 6:24pm mr_mike:

Oh come on. He totally answered the 'amazon brand' question reasonably. If I want bose headphones I know the amazon basics won't be the same
Avatar 6:24pm geezerette:

Bas, good one!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:24pm ultradamno:

Never *heard* it. Read it a bunch, but never heard it.
Avatar 6:25pm TDK60:

Can I order a moral compass online?
Avatar 6:26pm herb.nyc:

lack of a moral compass, they just be so pompous
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:26pm queems:

oh jesus this got dark
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:27pm VincentNifigance:

It sounds so creepy: “...the shadowy ‘Alphabet’ corporation...”
Avatar 6:28pm herb.nyc:

I feel so bad for Andy Parker - f you, google!
Avatar 6:28pm mr_mike:

I think hearing members are asking the wrong questions to catch them doing something wrong. Gg/Al already knows what they can get away with as long as there aren't internal documents
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:29pm queems:

are you listening, facebook?
Avatar 6:29pm mr_mike:

700,000 views of that murder. Please Anonymous take it down
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:29pm listener james from westwood:

Ted's clean on the Amazon $ count but he is the Zodiac Killer.
Avatar 6:30pm geezerette:

The walls are up, we're surrounded, they're jusi invisible.
  6:31pm Listener Robert:

This guy seems to be more bothered by publicity about his daughter's murder than about the murder itself! Does he object to all publicity of real-world violence? That's been a staple of news since...forever.
  6:32pm tak:

anything good about anonymous has been caught or stopped a good while ago. this is some vile stuff. good show.
Avatar 6:32pm geezerette:

  6:33pm tak:

well the murder already happened, once, while publicity goes on and on. i think he has a point
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:33pm listener james from westwood:

Quarter-sized hail in some parts of NJ. Great googly-moogly.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:33pm queems:

it is POURING right now in clifton, nj
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:34pm listener james from westwood:

Hirono's clean on Amazon money.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:36pm listener james from westwood:

So's my local congresscritter, Gottheimer, who seems to have just picked up Scott Garrett's bag route like a Lucchese taking over a Genovese's territory or Marlo Stanfield grabbing a Barksdale corner.
  6:38pm Listener Robert:

Tak, there've been a lot of pictures or vids of real-world horror that get shown over and over so much, they're famous. The demolition of the World Trade Center alone generated tons of it.
  6:39pm Listener Robert:

Consider how many times the Zapruder film alone gets looked at!
Avatar 6:39pm mr_mike:

This is a reasonable response if you listen, Mark
Avatar 6:39pm geezerette:

We're supposed to feel sorry for Google?!!!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:40pm chresti:

So, do they ever watch these videos, or just feed them into a machine?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:41pm Webhamster Henry:

CAPTCHA: Click on all the murder scenes above.
  6:41pm Gh:

I hope u go after Facebook for allowing harmful accusation posts to be left up for years
Avatar 6:42pm geezerette:

Webham, it hurts to laugh.
Avatar 6:42pm mr_mike:

If 200 news outlets show it then its owned by the uploading network. I hope he doesn't expect to remove all mention of his daughter's murder
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:43pm ultradamno:

And all these murder videos come with recommendations to videos claiming them all to be created by crisis actors.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:44pm coelacanth∅:

but several wfmu show hosts play youboob videos on their shows. (and incredibly hate on spotify, despite this...and despite shitty sound quality)
and wfmu aligned itself with amazon.

am i the only one who objects to this?
  6:45pm JakeGould:

Fish, sometimes there is no choice.
Avatar 6:47pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

All the Benefits - All the Control
...None of the Accountability...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:47pm ultradamno:

Searching for 'risky minors' is one way to go down a You Tube pedohole.
Avatar 6:48pm geezerette:

Talk faster, Google.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:48pm chresti:

Oh boy, ripping him a neww a- hole
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:48pm Carmichael:

Alexa will take the stand tomorrow.
  6:48pm Listener Robert:

Again the pedophiles thing! If you don't like how some people view your video, don't put it online?
Avatar 6:49pm Bas NL:

People upload. Anything they want. Why not give everyone the power to offload content? (Instead of the vague 'flagging of content.)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:49pm chresti:

They only see the numbers
Avatar 6:49pm geezerette:

Ha! Carm! :(
  6:50pm phillippe bastille:

great show, Mark!
Avatar 6:51pm geezerette:

Chresti, yep.
Avatar 6:51pm mr_mike:

grandstanding bully senator. Nothing will change, Bhatia is useless
Avatar 6:52pm geezerette:

FB should call it Rand.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:52pm Carmichael:

That's the spirit, Mr Mike!
Avatar 6:54pm geezerette:

"Innovative" not always good.
Avatar 6:55pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

These aren't even close to being Monopolies...
Nothing to see here!...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm Granny Spicy Tuna (they/them):

thanks for bringing this to the airwaves and cyberstreams
Avatar 6:56pm geezerette:

Thanks, Mark.
  6:56pm Listener Robert:

Great show again, Mr. Hurst. Really got me going, at least.
Avatar 6:57pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

'The only thing the Powers That Be really didn't like about Hitler was the Competition'...
- George Carlin
Hmm...Wall St., D.C., Silicon Valley...
Avatar 6:57pm TDK60:

Thanks again, Mark.
Avatar 6:58pm geezerette:

They're not asking.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm Granny Spicy Tuna (they/them):

As a resident of San Francisco for the last 30 years, i can tell you just how much these tech companies don't have morals or care about citizens
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm chresti:

Thanks Mark.
Avatar 6:58pm Bas NL:

Thanks Mark, Good one!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm listener james from westwood:

Thanks, Mark!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm ultradamno:

Wait, demolition?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm coelacanth∅:

Thanks Mark
Avatar 6:59pm mr_mike:

hand over all minutea to lawmakers, no. Abandon these moraless establishments ,yes
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:59pm chresti:

Asbergers behavior-
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:59pm Granny Spicy Tuna (they/them):

and this mash up is making me feel very funny
Avatar 7:00pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:00pm chresti:

They see that people are upset and don't know how to process it
Avatar 7:01pm geezerette:

Hey Chresti, agree.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:03pm Mark Hurst:

Thanks, everyone! Sorry I didn't get to all the clips. I blame the thunderstorm... but really, I think I had too many clips for one show!
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