We realize podcasts aren’t necessarily supposed to have seasons. But hey, Congress isn’t supposed to ask stupid questions of powerful tech CEO’s, either.
Yet here we are with a season finale chiefly about Congress doing just that thing. Rules were made to be broken on “Above the Fold.”
For the last time in 2018, bamboozling tangents that involve San Diegans throwing scooters in lakes, important ethical questions about Google’s societal responsibilities, and a healthy dose of luddite shaming await you.
Starting with Congress’s ‘saga of ineptitude’
A lot of ignorance sloshed around the hearing room when Congress attempted to grill Google CEO, Sundar Pichai – and Jeff and Francis were quick to call it out.
But the biggest farce is what wasn’t discussed at the hearing. Such as the fact that Google’s algorithms are in a black box. Nobody fully understands them, or for that matter, the full extent to which Google uses data.
And what about the moral integrity of its algorithms? How do you encode ethics into a massive database that determines so much about what content the world sees? Do you even try, or do you let the results truly mirror some societal consensus, as Google claims it’s doing?
Congress had a huge opportunity here to probe Google’s more cloak-and-dagger qualities, and they squandered it by focusing on things like why “idiot” is equated to Donald Trump in search results.
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