Are tech companies really “making the world a better place”? Isn’t “disruption” just code for circumventing legal regulations and ignoring labor laws? Does Silicon Valley really believe its own hype? On this week's show we’re thinking about “The Rhetoric of Big Tech.”
What Is It
Big tech is known for its "disruption" of established industries and changing fundamental aspects of our lives from shopping and delivery to communication and transit. While many welcome these changes, there are also worries about privacy, fairness, and deregulation. So how do tech companies think about what it is they are doing and what justifies it? Who are their philosophical sources, and do they use them responsibly? What role does New Age thinking, Ayn Rand, Martin Heidegger, and even Samuel Beckett play in shaping the rhetoric of big tech? Josh and Ray debug the code with Adrian Daub from Stanford University, author of What Tech Calls Thinking: An Inquiry into the Intellectual Bedrock of Silicon Valley.