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Your Undivided Attention

78 EpisodesProduced by Tristan Harris and Aza Raskin, The Center for Humane TechnologyWebsite

In this podcast from the Center for Humane Technology, co-hosts Tristan Harris and Aza Raskin explore the incredible power that technology has over our lives — and how we can use it to catalyze a humane future.Join us every other Thursday as we confront challenges and explore solutions with a wide-r… read more

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Ask Us Anything: You Asked, We Answered

December 29th, 2022


Welcome to our first-ever Ask Us Anything episode. Recently we put out a call for questions… and, wow, did you come through! We got more than 100 responses from listeners to this podcast from all over the world. It was …

Can Psychedelic Therapy Reset Our Social Media Brains?

December 15th, 2022


When you look at the world, it can feel like we're in a precarious moment. If you’ve listened to past episodes, you know we call this the meta-crisis — an era of overlapping and interconnected crises like climate …

Real Social Media Solutions, Now — with Frances Haugen

November 23rd, 2022


When it comes to social media risk, there is reason to hope for consensus. Center for Humane Technology co-founder Tristan Harris recently helped …

Spotlight — Humane Technology on '60 Minutes'

November 10th, 2022


The weekly American news show 60 Minutes invited Center for Humane Technology co-founder Tristan Harris back recently to discuss political …

Spotlight — Elon, Twitter and the Gladiator Arena

October 27th, 2022


Since it’s looking more and more like Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, will probably soon have ownership of Twitter, we wanted to do a special …

They Don’t Represent Us — with Larry Lessig

October 20th, 2022


We often talk about the need to protect American democracy. But perhaps those of us in the United States don't currently live in a democracy.

As research shows, there's pretty much no correlation between the percentage …

Stepping Into the Metaverse — with Dr. Courtney Cogburn and Prof. Jeremy Bailenson

October 6th, 2022


The next frontier of the internet is the metaverse. That's why Mark Zuckerberg changed the name of his company from Facebook to Meta, and just sold …

Fighting With Mirages of Each Other — with Adam Mastroianni

September 22nd, 2022


Have you ever lost a friend to misperception? Have you lost a friend or a family member to the idea that your views got so different, that it was time to end the relationship — perhaps by unfriending each other on …

Spotlight — Addressing the TikTok Threat

September 8th, 2022


Imagine it's the Cold War. Imagine that the Soviet Union puts itself in a position to influence the television programming of the entire Western …

Spotlight — How might a long-term stock market transform tech?

August 25th, 2022


At Center for Humane Technology, we often talk about multipolar traps — which arise when individuals have an incentive to act in ways that are …

The Invisible Cyber-War

August 4th, 2022


When you hear the word cyber-attack, what comes to mind? Someone hacking into your email, or stealing your Facebook password?

As it turns out, our most critical infrastructure can be hacked. Our banks, water treatment …

An Alternative to Silicon Valley Unicorns

June 30th, 2022


Why isn't Twitter doing more to get bots off their platform? Why isn’t Uber taking better care of its drivers? 

What if...they can't?

Venture-capital backed companies like Twitter and Uber are held accountable to …

Spotlight — Conversations With People Who Hate Me with Dylan Marron

June 16th, 2022


This week on Your Undivided Attention, we’re doing something different: we’re airing an episode of another podcast that’s also part of the TED Audio …

How Political Language Is Engineered — with Drew Westen and Frank Luntz

June 2nd, 2022


Democracy depends on our ability to choose our political views. But the language we use to talk about political issues is deliberately designed to be …

Transcending the Internet Hate Game — with Dylan Marron

May 19th, 2022


The game that social media sets us up to play is a game that rewards outrage. It's a game that we win by being better than other players at dunking on each other, straw-manning each other, and assuming the worst in each …

How To Free Our Minds — with Cult Deprogramming Expert Dr. Steven Hassan

May 5th, 2022


How would you know if you were in a cult? 

If not a cult, then at least under undue influence?

The truth is: we're all under some form of undue …

Spotlight — A Bigger Picture on Elon & Twitter

April 26th, 2022


If Elon Musk owns Twitter, what are the risks and what are the opportunities? In order for Twitter to support democracy — and Musk’s goal of becoming …

What Is Civil War in the Digital Age? — with Barbara F. Walter

April 21st, 2022


Civil war might be the most likely escalation pathway towards disaster for our country. On the flip side, learning how to avoid civil conflict — and more ambitiously, repair our civic fabric — might have the greatest …

Spotlight — What Is Humane Technology?

April 7th, 2022


“The fundamental problem of humanity is that we have paleolithic emotions, medieval institutions, and God-like technology.” — E. O. Wilson.

More than …

Digital Democracy is Within Reach with Audrey Tang (Rerun)

March 24th, 2022


[This episode originally aired on July 23rd, 2020.] Imagine a world where every country has a digital minister and technologically-enabled …

The Dark Side Of Decentralization — with Audrey Kurth Cronin

March 10th, 2022


Is decentralization inherently a good thing? 

These days, there's a lot of talk about decentralization. Decentralized social media platforms can allow us to own our own data. Decentralized cryptocurrencies can enable …

The Invisible Influence of Language — with Lera Boroditsky

February 24th, 2022


One of the oldest technologies we have is language. How do the words we use influence the way we think?

The media can talk about immigrants scurrying

How Science Fiction Can Shape Our Reality — with Kim Stanley Robinson

February 10th, 2022


The meta-crisis is so vast: climate change, exponential technology, addiction, polarization, and more. How do we grasp it, let alone take steps to …

Here’s Our Plan And We Don’t Know — with Tristan Harris, Aza Raskin and Stephanie Lepp

February 3rd, 2022


Renowned quantum physicist Richard Feynman once wrote, "It is our capacity to doubt that will determine the future of civilization." 

In that spirit, this episode is a little different – because we're talking openly

Is World War III Already Here? — with Lieutenant General H. R. McMaster

January 13th, 2022


Would you say that the US is in war-time or peace-time? How do you know? 

The truth is, the nature of warfare has changed so fundamentally, that we're …

A Fresh Take on Tech in China — with Rui Ma and Duncan Clark

December 10th, 2021


Who do you think the Chinese government considers its biggest rival? The United States, right? Actually, the Chinese government considers its biggest …

Behind the Curtain on The Social Dilemma — with Jeff Orlowski-Yang and Larissa Rhodes

November 11th, 2021


How do you make a film that impacts more than 100 million people in 190 countries in 30 languages?

This week on Your Undivided Attention, we're going behind the curtain on The Social Dilemma — the Netflix documentary …

A Conversation with Facebook Whistleblower Frances Haugen

October 18th, 2021


We are now in social media's Big Tobacco moment. And that’s largely thanks to the courage of one woman: Frances Haugen.

Frances is a specialist in algorithmic product management. She worked at Google, Pinterest, and Yelp …

Spotlight — A Whirlwind Week of Whistleblowing

October 6th, 2021


In seven years of working on the problems of runaway technology, we’ve never experienced a week like this! In this bonus episode of Your Undivided …

Making Meaning in Challenging Times — with Jamie Wheal

September 30th, 2021


What helps you make meaning in challenging times? As you confront COVID, the climate crisis, and all of the challenges we discuss on this show, what helps you avoid nihilism or fundamentalism, and instead access …

Spotlight — The Facebook Files with Tristan Harris, Frank Luntz, and Daniel Schmachtenberger

September 21st, 2021


On September 13th, the Wall Street Journal released The Facebook Files, an ongoing investigation of the extent to which Facebook's problems are …

The Power of Solutions Journalism — with Tina Rosenberg and Hélène Biandudi Hofer

September 3rd, 2021


What is the goal of our digital information environment? Is it simply to inform us, or also to empower us to act? 

The Solutions Journalism Network

Do You Want to Become a Vampire? — with L.A. Paul

August 12th, 2021


How do we decide whether to undergo a transformative experience when we don’t know how that experience will change us? This is the central question …

You Will Never Breathe the Same Again — with James Nestor

July 23rd, 2021


When author and journalist James Nestor began researching a piece on free diving, he was stunned. He found that free divers could hold their breath …

A Facebook Whistleblower — with Sophie Zhang

July 9th, 2021


In September of 2020, on her last day at Facebook, data scientist Sophie Zhang posted a 7,900-word memo to the company's internal site. In it, she described the anguish and guilt she had experienced over the last two …

A Problem Well-Stated is Half-Solved — with Daniel Schmachtenberger

June 25th, 2021


We’ve explored many different problems on Your Undivided Attention — addiction, disinformation, polarization, climate change, and more. But what if …

[Unedited] A Problem Well-Stated is Half-Solved — with Daniel Schmachtenberger

June 25th, 2021


We’ve explored many different problems on Your Undivided Attention — addiction, disinformation, polarization, climate change, and more. But what if …

Mr. Harris Zooms to Washington

May 10th, 2021


Back in January 2020, Tristan Harris went to Washington, D.C. to testify before the U.S. Congress on the harms of social media. A few weeks ago, he …

Can Your Reality Turn on a Word? — with Anthony Jacquin

April 29th, 2021


Can hypnosis be a tool to help us see how our minds are being shaped and manipulated more than we realize? Guest Anthony Jacquin is a hypnotist and …

The Stubborn Optimist's Guide Revisited — with Christiana Figueres (Rerun)

April 22nd, 2021


[This episode originally aired May 21, 2020] Internationally-recognized global leader on climate change Christiana Figueres argues that the battle against global threats like climate change begins in our own heads. She …

Mind the (Perception) Gap — with Dan Vallone

April 15th, 2021


What do you think the other side thinks? Guest Dan Vallone is the Director of More in Common U.S.A., an organization that’s been asking Democrats and Republicans that critical question. Their work has uncovered …

Spotlight — Coded Bias

April 8th, 2021


The film Coded Bias follows MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini through her investigation of algorithmic discrimination, after she accidentally …

Come Together Right Now — with Shamil Idriss

April 1st, 2021


How many technologists have traveled to Niger, or the Balkans, or Rwanda, to learn the lessons of peacebuilding? Technology and social media are …

Disinformation Then and Now — with Camille François

March 18th, 2021


Disinformation researchers have been fighting two battles over the last decade: one to combat and contain harmful information, and one to convince …

The Courage to Connect — with Ciaran O’Connor and John Wood, Jr.

March 4th, 2021


It’s no revelation that Americans aren’t getting along. But it’s easier to diagnose the problem than come up with solutions. The organization Braver …

A Renegade Solution to Extractive Economics — with Kate Raworth

February 11th, 2021


When Kate Raworth began studying economics, she was disappointed that the mainstream version of the discipline didn’t fully address many of the world …

Two Million Years in Two Hours: A Conversation with Yuval Noah Harari

January 15th, 2021


Yuval Noah Harari is one of the rare historians who can give us a two-million-year perspective on today’s headlines. In this wide-ranging …

Won't You Be My Neighbor? A Civic Vision for the Internet — with Eli Pariser

December 23rd, 2020


You’ve heard us talk before on this podcast about the pitfalls of trying to moderate a “global public square.” Our guest today, Eli Pariser, co-director of Civic Signals, co-founder of Avaaz, and author of "The Filter …

Are the Kids Alright? — with Jonathan Haidt

October 27th, 2020


We are in the midst of a teen mental health crisis. Since 2011, the rate of U.S. hospitalizations for preteen girls who have self-harmed is up 189 …

Your Nation's Attention for the Price of a Used Car — with Zahed Amanullah

October 6th, 2020


Today’s extremists don’t need highly produced videos like ISIS. They don’t need deep pockets like Russia. With the right message, a fringe organization can reach the majority of a nation’s Facebook users for the price …

Spotlight: The Social Dilemma

September 9th, 2020


A new documentary called The Social Dilemma comes out on Netflix today, September 9, 2020. We hope that this film, full of interviews with tech …

Facebook Goes '2Africa' — with Julie Owono

September 2nd, 2020


This summer, Facebook unveiled “2Africa,” a subsea cable project that will encircle nearly the entire continent of Africa — much to the surprise of

When Media Was for You and Me — with Fred Turner

August 6th, 2020


In 1940, a group of 60 American intellectuals formed the Committee for National Morale. “They’ve largely been forgotten,” says Fred Turner, a professor of communications at Stanford University, but their work had a …

Digital Democracy Is Within Reach — with Audrey Tang

July 23rd, 2020


Imagine a world where every country has a digital minister and technologically-enabled legislative bodies. Votes are completely transparent and audio …

Spotlight — Beyond the Boycott

July 10th, 2020


#StopHateforProfit is an important first step, but we need to go much further. 

The World According to Q — with Travis View

July 8th, 2020


What would inspire someone to singlehandedly initiate an armed standoff on the Hoover Dam, or lead the police on a 100-mile-an-hour car chase while …

The Bully’s Pulpit — with Fadi Quran

June 22nd, 2020


The sound of bullies on social media can be deafening, but what about their victims? “They're just sitting there being pummeled and pummeled and …

The Dictator's Playbook Revisited — with Maria Ressa (Rerun)

June 17th, 2020


[This episode originally aired on November 5, 2019] Maria Ressa is arguably one of the bravest journalists working in the Philippines today. As co-founder and CEO of the media site Rappler, she has withstood death …

The Fake News of Your Own Mind — with Jack Kornfield and Trudy Goodman

June 2nd, 2020


When you’re gripped by anxiety, fear, grief or dread, how do you escape? It can happen in the span of a few breaths, according to meditation experts Jack Kornfield and Trudy Goodman. They have helped thousands of people …

The Stubborn Optimist’s Guide to Saving the Planet — with Christiana Figueres

May 21st, 2020


How can we feel empowered to take on global threats? The battle begins in our heads, argues Christiana Figueres. She became the United Nation’s top climate official, after she had watched the 2009 Copenhagen climate …

The Spin Doctors Are In — with Renée DiResta

May 7th, 2020


How does disinformation spread in the age of COVID-19? It takes an expert like Renée DiResta to trace conspiracy theories back to their source. She’s …

When Attention Went on Sale — with Tim Wu

April 28th, 2020


An information system that relies on advertising was not born with the Internet. But social media platforms have taken it to an entirely new level, becoming a major force in how we make sense of ourselves and the world …

Changing Our Climate of Denial — with Anthony Leiserowitz

April 22nd, 2020


We agree more than we think we do, but tech platforms distort our perceptions by amplifying the loudest, angriest and most dismissive voices online. In reality, they’re just a noisy faction. This Earth Day we ask

Stranger than Fiction — with Claire Wardle

March 31st, 2020


How can tech companies help flatten the curve? First and foremost, they must address the lethal misinformation and disinformation circulating on …

Mr. Harris Goes to Washington

January 30th, 2020


What difference does a few hours of Congressional testimony make? Tristan takes us behind the scenes of his January 8th testimony to the Energy and Commerce Committee on disinformation in the digital age. With just …

Trust Falls — with Rachel Botsman

January 14th, 2020


We are in the middle of a global trust crisis. Neighbors are strangers and local news sources are becoming scarcer; institutions that used to …

The Cure for Hate — with Tony McAleer

December 19th, 2019


“You can binge watch an ideology in a weekend,” says Tony McAleer. He should know. A former white supremacist, McAleer was introduced to neo-Nazi …

Rock the Voter — with Brittany Kaiser

December 5th, 2019


Brittany Kaiser, a former Cambridge Analytica insider, witnessed a two day presentation at the company that shocked her and her co-workers. It laid …

The Dictator's Playbook — with Maria Ressa

November 5th, 2019


Maria Ressa is arguably one of the bravest journalists working in the Philippines today. As co-founder and CEO of the media site Rappler, she has …

The Opposite of Addiction — with Johann Hari

October 22nd, 2019


What causes addiction? Johann Hari, author of Chasing the Scream, travelled some 30,000 miles in search of an answer. He met with researchers and lawmakers, drug dealers and drug makers, those who were struggling with …

Pardon the Interruptions — with Gloria Mark

August 14th, 2019


Every 40 seconds, our attention breaks. It takes an act of extreme self-awareness to even notice. That’s why Gloria Mark, a professor in the Department of Informatics at University of California, Irvine, started …

From Russia with Likes (Part 2) — with Renée DiResta

August 1st, 2019


In the second part of our interview with Renée DiResta, disinformation expert, Mozilla fellow, and co-author of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s Russia investigation, she explains how social media platforms use your …

From Russia with Likes (Part 1) — with Renée DiResta

July 24th, 2019


Today’s online propaganda has evolved in unforeseeable and seemingly absurd ways; by laughing at or spreading a Kermit the Frog meme, you may be …

Down the Rabbit Hole by Design — with Guillaume Chaslot

July 10th, 2019


When we press play on a YouTube video, we set in motion an algorithm that taps all available data to find the next video that keeps us glued to the screen. Because of its advertising-based business model, YouTube’s top …

With Great Power Comes... No Responsibility? — with Yaёl Eisenstat

June 25th, 2019


Aza sits down with Yael Eisenstat, a former CIA officer and a former advisor at the White House. When Yael noticed that Americans were having a harder and harder time finding common ground, she shifted her work from …

Should've Stayed in Vegas — with Natasha Dow Schüll

June 19th, 2019


In part two of our interview with cultural anthropologist Natasha Dow Schüll, author of Addiction by Design, we learn what gamblers are really after …

What Happened in Vegas — with Natasha Dow Schüll

June 10th, 2019


Natasha Dow Schüll, author of Addiction by Design, has spent years studying how slot machines hold gamblers spellbound, in an endless loop of play. …

Launching June 10: Your Undivided Attention

April 16th, 2019


Technology has shredded our attention. We can do better.

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