<billions> Links - from late April and early May 2020

Sam de Silva sam at commonedge.com.au
Mon May 18 15:15:35 CEST 2020

Dear all,

It’s been a few month since the last release of the Billions email. For those who may have forgotten, Billions is (content) tracing the story - through articles and viewpoints - of how social media and big and small digital tech are impacting our lives and our planet. 

Over the next few weeks, we are going to experiment with and co-opt Telegram and Whatsapp to spread Billions and ‘build community'. 

If you want to join the Telegram Billions group - click here:


As always, if you have any feedback or contributions to make, please reply to this message. 

And here’s this week’s Billions download.

Best, Sam / Billions


‘Conspiracy bingo’: Transatlantic extremists seize on the pandemic, 12 May 2020, Politico
...extremist messages are finding fertile ground on fringe online platforms like 4chan, Telegram and a gamer hangout called Discord.

Facebook and the Folly of Self-Regulation, 9 May 2020, Wired Magazine
The company's new review board is designed to move slowly and keep things intact.

Screen New Deal, 9 May 2020, The Intercept
Under Cover of Mass Death, Andrew Cuomo Calls in the Billionaires to Build a High-Tech Dystopia

China’s Covid-19 QR code surveillance state, 7 May 2020, Financial Times
In a techno-authoritarian system, it is best to carry the correct digital credentials at all times.

Why countries keep bowing to Apple and Google’s contact tracing app requirements, 8 May 2020, The Verge
They own the hardware, they own the software, and national governments who would use it to find new cases of COVID-19 have to do it on the companies’ terms.

The Republic of Facebook, 6 May 2020, Just Security
With the Naming of Oversight Board Members, What Kind of Institution Will This Become?

India COVID-19 app raises surveillance fears, 2 May 2020, Aljazeera
Experts raise privacy concerns over government's Aarogya Setu app, now mandatory for public and private sector workers.

Covid-19 Disinformation & Social Media Manipulation, 17 Apr 2020, Australian Strategic Policy Institute
Arange of actors are manipulating the information environment to exploit the COVID-19 crisis for strategic gain.

Deepfakes 2.0: The New Era of “Truth Decay”, 14 Apr 2020, Just Security
According to Matthew Turek, a program manager for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), “We don’t know where this is going to end. We may be headed toward a zero trust environment.”
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