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Working as Intended: Surveillance Capitalism is not a Rogue Capitalism

July 21, 2020 -
8:00am to 9:00am

Abstract: Big Tech companies are providing free services that billions of people use, which in turn enables them to monitor the behaviour of their users in astonishing detail. Very often without their explicit consent. This new form of capitalism that found a way to use tech for its purposes has recently been named “Surveillance capitalism”. Companies spy because data allows them to influence their operations for their benefit in a devastatingly effective way.What if Big Tech’s ability to command billions for ads has more to do with cornering markets and eking out marginal gains through targeting, with stale data being largely useless for commercial purposes — but still full of juicy kompromat for greedy state surveillance agencies? Without any regulatory oversight, are we all test rabbits for the big tech companies? Do free-range BigTech monopolies cause erosion of competition and innovation, democracy, personal freedoms, and sense of community?

Bio: Cory Doctorow is a science fiction novelist, journalist, and technology activist, working as a special advisor for the Electronic Frontier Foundation. He is a former director of Europen Affairs for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a non-profit civil liberties group that defends freedom in technology law, policy, standards, and treaties.

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Organizers==========The LogicLounge is hosted by the 32nd International Conference on Computer-Aided Verification (CAV) in memoriam of Helmut Veith. It is organized by Aina Niemetz and Mathias Preiner of Stanford University in collaboration with the Vienna Center for Logic and Algorithms at TU Wien (VCLA). About the LogicLounge=====================The series originated in 2014 at the Vienna Summer of Logic, and is since then travelling between Vienna and the venue of the CAV conferences. LogicLounge features discussions on the “science of reasoning” in the areas of logic, philosophy, mathematics, computer science and artificial intelligence. The recordings of the past LogicLounges with Toby Walsh, Eva Galperin, Moshe Vardi or Dana Scott, among others, are available at:

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