39 episodes

A podcast about technology and democracy, sponsored by Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy and the Keenan Institute for Ethics

Debugger Bob Sullivan

    • News
    • 4.4 • 9 Ratings

A podcast about technology and democracy, sponsored by Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy and the Keenan Institute for Ethics

    What's going on with Twitter Blue Checks? It's a long story

    What's going on with Twitter Blue Checks? It's a long story

    Elon Musk has taken over Twitter and .. well, a lot is going on. One really important development that might be overlooked is Musk's new ... and now delayed ... attempt to change Twitter's Blue Check system. Verification online is a very, very tricky subject. In this episode of Debugger in 10, Robyn Caplan of Duke University offers a bit of a history lesson on Twitter's Blue Checks. It's a good reminder that many people have never really been happy with how they work. 

    • 19 min
    The problem with 'Do your own research'

    The problem with 'Do your own research'

    "Do your own research" sounds like a harmless suggestion. It's more complicated than that, says today's guest, UNC professor Francesa Tripodi, author of the new book The Propagandists' Playbook. In this episode of Debugger in 10, Tripodi discusses the IKEA Effect in research, why Googling is more like a scavenger hunt, and how algorithmic polarization means the question you ask leads you to the answers you get.   

    • 20 min
    Uber exec convicted for hiding hack; should cybersecurity workers worry?

    Uber exec convicted for hiding hack; should cybersecurity workers worry?

    Should a company executive face criminal charges after a data breach? That's one of the questions opened up by the remarkable trial recently of Joe Sullivan, former head of cyber security at Uber, who was recently convicted of essentially hiding a hack from federal investigators. The case has people in cyber security divided and maybe a little bit scared. In this episode of Debugger in 10, Duke University Law Professor Shane Stansbury dives into the details.

    • 11 min
    Data brokers and scammers team up to target the elderly, vulnerable

    Data brokers and scammers team up to target the elderly, vulnerable

    Research by Duke University shows data brokers have collaborated with scammers  - and they've fine-tuned their algorithms to attack the most vulnerable consumers, such as people facing cognitive issues.  Duke's Alistair Simmons and Justin Sherman discuss their findings on this episode of Debugger in 10. 

    • 12 min
    Should the FTC stop Facebook from acquiring VR firm? And make it 'give back' Instagram and WhatsApp?

    Should the FTC stop Facebook from acquiring VR firm? And make it 'give back' Instagram and WhatsApp?

    There’s a new front that’s opened in the years-long battle between the FTC and Facebook.  Federal regulators have sued to stop the social media giant’s proposed acquisition of a company named Within, which makes a popular virtual reality fitness app called Supernatural. In this episode of Debugger in 10, we talk with Duke University law professor Barak Richman about the merits of the case, and about the larger context of the FTCs legal battles with Facebook / Meta. 

    • 12 min
    From soulless...to soulful work in cyber

    From soulless...to soulful work in cyber

    Bryan Palma, CEO of cybersecurity firm Trellix, spoke recently at the biggest cybersecurity conference in the world, the RSA conference, and delivered quite the call to action. Social media companies "have revealed themselves as soulless," he said.  Tech workers who want to find more meaning in their work...well, there's plenty of work to do in cybersecurity. Palma lays out his plan to fill millions of unfilled tech jobs by first explaining that cybersecurity work is....heroic....through an effort he calls #SoulfulWork.

    • 14 min

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5
9 Ratings

9 Ratings

Lunarjane ,

Debugger

Music in the background is extremely annoying. It’s difficult to listen to this podcast. I was very interested in this topic and to learn more in depth big techs disregard for all of us.

johngable ,

Innocently misdirected

The series harps on the idea that government can force companies like Facebook to police themselves and/or allow themselves to be policed. That’s never going to happen given the sheer amount of money and power these platforms have. There is no “public policy” solution to these problems, whether we’re talking about ransom ware attacks or the illegal sale of our private information. The host draws parallels between regulating airlines, but that’s apples and oranges. It’s in airlines interests not to crash. Facebook makes money to a great degree by selling our information. They will never stop. What would be far more useful and realistic is a focus on how we can protect ourselves. Do VPNs make a difference? If I quit Facebook entirely will that help? It doesn’t help that the host uses horribly dated words like “cyberspace” or that the people he interviews are often utterly confused by his ivory tower questions. Finally, the series starts with a total non-séquitor about the .com bubble in Ireland. We are told over and over that the podcast is NOT about Ireland or Facebook but in truth the podcast focuses on Facebook, never explains why Ireland is mentioned, and assumes that the “smart people” in the world can fix all this stuff. In sum, a terrible, poorly organized and overly academic look at evil perpetrated online with no applicable solutions.

Top Podcasts In News

Rachel Maddow, MSNBC
The New York Times
NPR
The Daily Wire
Crooked Media
Serial Productions & The New York Times

You Might Also Like

Politicon
Politicon
The spiked podcast
Last Orders - a spiked podcast
Politicon
The Brendan O'Neill Show