Notes From An Emergency

A talk from the re:publica conference in Berlin:

The good part about naming a talk in 2017 ‘Notes from an Emergency’ is that there are so many directions to take it. The emergency I want to talk about is the rise of a vigorous ethnic nationalism in Europe and America. This nationalism makes skillful use of online tools, tools that we believed inherently promoted freedom, to advance an authoritarian agenda.

What Do You Desire?

The writer, entering her thirties single and adrift, heads to San Francisco to spend time with’s Princess Donna Dolore and attend a gangbang “where all the men were dressed as panda bears.”

It Knows

On the Google conundrum:

It’s clearly wrong for all the information in all the world’s books to be in the sole possession of a single company. It’s clearly not ideal that only one company in the world can, with increasing accuracy, translate text between 506 different pairs of languages. On the other hand, if Google doesn’t do these things, who will?

How Google Dominates Us

On how search and advertising became indistinguishable, the finer points of not being evil, and why privacy is by nature immeasurable. How Google made us the product:

“Google conquered the advertising world with nothing more than applied mathematics,” wrote Chris Anderson, the editor of Wired. “It didn’t pretend to know anything about the culture and conventions of advertising—it just assumed that better data, with better analytical tools, would win the day. And Google was right.”