"Antisocial" author Andrew Marantz on how the far right hijacked the internet
Andrew Marantz, a staff writer at the New Yorker, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about his new book, Antisocial: Online Extremists, TechnoUtopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation. He discusses the danger of designing social media platforms around emotional engagement, how people like Mike Cernovich and Milo Yiannopoulos exploited people's belief in a broad political "consensus," and technology's role in advancing hate and extremism online. Marantz also explains what he calls the...
Oct 19, 2019
Andrew Marantz professional background - how the book came about.
The key players: Andrew Breitbart
The key players: Steve Bannon
A "patron saint" of the book: Richard Rorty
The key players: Milo Yiannopoulos
Integrating all the threads: Mike Cernovich
Individuals have learned how to create social media waves that drive the news
If we understand the mechanism, why does it keep working? Macro-targeting and micro-targeting
The key players: Jim Hoft of Gateway Pundit
What is the state of things now? Richard Spencer
Is there a Great American Consensus? A widely-held mainstream view which is the "real" America?
What the Nationalists and the Left agree on: America was set up as a country for white men.
What is the role of technology in this situation?
To what degree are the shallow "libertarian" and "techno-utopian" roots of Silicon Valley to blame for the problem?
So what about the "Utopian" part of techno-utopian?
The injustice of Silicon Valley's view of themselves as "victims"
Silicon Valley's view of themselves as luminaries, not just motivated by profit
The philanthropy of Silicon Valley as hubris: don't tell us what the problems of the world are
The support of free speech by Silicon Valley as a naive, self-serving position
So where are the online extremists now? What about Russia? The Overton Window
Who remains - has the movement burned itself out? Tucker Carlson
The mainstream movement: Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham
Trump as a product of the movement rather than as a weird aberration - Fox and Friends
Why the constant lying by Trump? Does it work? Yes: it's part of building an emotional bond with the constituency.
Is Twitter responsible for this situation?
What can we do? Where does it go next? We have to regulate it.
We know social media is bad for society - so what is next? Regulation has to be driven by social consensus. Ultimately, it is a Capitalism problem.
Are you hopeful after writing this?
Wrap up - Marantz's current article: "Crisis of Conscience" and the Esalen Institute
A brief aside regarding "The Truman Show"