Alex Payne: “Technology is made of people”


What I’ve been saying a long time. The premise of TummelVision is that everythign is made of people. We make everything we have. Only Alex, a brilliant technologist (thank him for twitter to some degree and the upcoming bank simple which I will switch to in one second) spells it out as well as why we need to regulate tech. What motivated his post?

As part of their reporting on recent events in the Middle East last week, NPR ran a story called Internet Freedom and the US State Department. The story is an interview with Alec Ross, co-founder of nonprofit technology provider One Economy and now Senior Advisor for Innovation to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

While dodging hard questions about US companies selling restrictive or invasive technologies to repressive regimes, Mr. Ross made a statement that jumped out at me from my car stereo:

“[T]echnology itself is value-neutral. It depends on how a government chooses to use these technologies.”

I believe this is an unproductive, misguided, and all too common way of thinking about technology.

The rest of this essential post.

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