Don't Be Evil: How Big Tech Betrayed Its Founding Principles - And All of Us
Foroohar (Rana)
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BOOK ABSTRACT:

Notes


Inside Cover Blurbs
  1. A penetrating indictment of how today's largest tech companies are hijacking our data, our livelihoods, our social fabric, and our minds - from an acclaimed Financial Times columnist and CNN analyst
  2. Winner of the porchlight business book award - named one of the best books of the year by Foreign Affairs and Evening Standard.
  3. "Don't be evil" was enshrined as Google's original corporate mantra back in its early days, when the company's cheerful logo still conveyed the utopian vision for a future in which technology would inevitably make the world better, safer, and more prosperous.
  4. Unfortunately, it's been quite a while since Google, or the majority of the Big Tech companies, lived up to this founding philosophy. Today, the utopia they sought to create is looking more dystopian than ever: from digital surveillance and the loss of privacy to the spreading of misinformation and hate speech to predatory algorithms targeting the weak and vulnerable to products that have been engineered to manipulate our desires.
  5. How did we get here? How did these once-scrappy and idealistic enterprises become rapacious monopolies with the power to corrupt our elections, co-opt all our data, and control the largest single chunk of corporate wealth - while evading all semblance of regulation and taxes? In Don't Be Evil, Financial Times global business columnist Rana Foroohar tells the story of how Big Tech lost its soul - and ate our lunch.
  6. Through her skilled reporting and unparalleled access - won through nearly thirty years covering business and technology - she shows the true extent to which behemoths like Google, Facebook, Apple, and Amazon are monetizing both our data and our attention, without us seeing a penny of those exorbitant profits.
  7. Finally, Foroohar lays out a plan for how we can resist, by creating a framework that fosters innovation while also protecting us from the dark side of digital technology.
  8. Rana Foroohar is the global business columnist and an associate editor for the Financial Times and CNN’s global economic analyst. She was awarded the 2018 Best in Business Award by the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing (SABEW) for her opinion writing on the world’s largest technology companies. Previously, Foroohar was the assistant managing editor in charge of business and economics at Time, as well as the magazine’s economic columnist. She also spent thirteen years at Newsweek as an economic and foreign affairs editor and a foreign correspondent. During that time, she was awarded the German Marshall Fund's Peter R. Weitz Prize for transatlantic reporting. She has received awards and fellowships from institutions such as the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and the East-West Center. She is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Back Cover Affidavits
  1. "At first sight, Don't Be Evil looks like it's doing for Google what muckraking journalist Ida Tarbell did for Standard Oil over a century ago. But this whip-smart, highly readable book's scope turns out to be much broader. Worried about the monopolistic tendencies of big tech? The addictive apps on your iPhone? The role Facebook played in Donald Trump's election? Foroohar will leave you even more worried, but a lot better informed."
    Niall Ferguson, Milbank Family Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford, and author of The Square and the Tower
  2. “Goes beyond the economic problems of market distortion and monopoly power and examines the broader implications for society of the untrammelled and under-regulated Silicon Valley companies . . . Foroohar demonstrates that while the creed ‘Don’t be evil’ may have initially inspired the Silicon Valley giants, its principle has long been left behind.”
    → Joseph E. Stiglitz, Nobel Laureate in economics
  3. “We are most fortunate to have Rana Foroohar’s laser vision and trenchant business analysis turned on the tech giants. ... A crucial contribution to the growing debate on how to constrain the dark power of the tech corporations, binding them to the real needs of people and society.”
    → Shoshana Zuboff, author of The Age of Surveillance Capitalism and Professor Emerita at Harvard Business School
  4. “Rana Foroohar’s new book explains how Big Tech firms have moved permanently beyond the reach of tax laws by leveraging the same opaque financial wizardry and scale that big banks did before the financial crisis. Her urgent message is ‘Yes, we really are living in the Matrix,’ and it’s time to rise up and resist our algorithmic overlords.”
    Cathy O'Neill, New York Times bestselling author of "O'Neill (Cathy) - Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy" and CEO of ORCAA
  5. “This book should be read by every policy maker in the United States and around the world. As Foroohar makes clear, the self-regulation of Big Tech is not an option, and she proposes real-world solutions that could make a big difference.’’
    → Jonathan Taplin, Director Emeritus of the Annenberg Innovation Lab at the University of Southern California and author of Move Fast and Break Things

BOOK COMMENT:

Penguin Random House USA (5 Nov. 2019)



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