A podcast devoted to exploring the tech industry, the products and policy decisions that shape it, and its impact on our everyday lives. Join Matt Perault, the director of the Center of Science & Technology Policy at Duke University, as he hosts guests from all corners of the industry: everyone from tech experts and policy gurus, to local business owners who are using social media to promote their brands. TBD is tackling the industry from every angle.
How do organizations create a healthy culture? Mike Rognlien, a founding member of Facebook’s Learning and Development team, shares the lessons he learned from building and teaching culture at Facebook. After leaving Facebook, Mike wrote a book, This Is Now Your Company, that focuses on how people can take ownership in the workplace. He also started his own consulting agency, Multiple Hats Management, where he provides coaching and learning to organizations, including training on implicit race and gender bias. In this episode, Mike talks about the frustrations of his departure from Facebook, how he runs his business, and the shift towards more flexibility in HR. Listen in.
Reassessing Tech Policy
Tech policy discussions about privacy, competition, and speech often center on benefitting the consumer - but which policies actually do it? Adam Kovacevich is the Founder and CEO of the Chamber of Progress, a new center-left tech industry policy coalition promoting technology’s progressive future. Adam previously worked at Lime, where he was the head of government relations and public affairs for North America and Asia Pacific. Before that, he was a senior director on Google’s public policy team. In this episode of TBD, Adam and Matt discuss Section 230, competition policy, business models, Democratic values, and the role of industry in policy development. Listen in.
Lifting Up the Startups
Debates in tech policy are often dominated by a focus on a small handful of companies, but the tech sector encompasses a far broader group of companies of all sizes. Kate Tummarello is the Executive Director of Engine, a nonprofit organization that works with a community of thousands of high-tech, growth-oriented startups across the nation to support technology entrepreneurship. Kate is focused on ensuring that the voices of these startups are included in tech policy debates on issues like Section 230, antitrust, and diversity and inclusion. In this episode, Kate and Matt discuss Engine’s role in the tech sector, how startups view key issues like content moderation and antitrust, and the tactics Engine uses to lift up the voices of startups.
Taking a Leap
It’s daunting to leave behind the perks, resources, and stability of a steady job. But Nancy Scola, a former senior technology reporter at POLITICO, took a leap to pursue more independent and entrepreneurial projects. She currently publishes “Slow Build”, a newsletter exploring the intersection of technology and society, on Substack and teaches digital journalism at Georgetown University. In this episode, Nancy talks about what led her to her decision, how it gave her an opportunity to look at tech issues through a different lens, and how journalists cover the tech sector. Listen in.
Big Tech, Antitrust, and Liberty from All Masters
Barry Lynn is the director of the Open Markets Institute, which aims to “address threats to our democracy, individual liberties, and our national security from today’s unprecedented levels of corporate concentration and monopoly power.” Barry has worked in this field for many years, but is probably best known for his work on concentration in the tech sector. In this episode of TBD, he and Matt discuss his new book, (Liberty from All Masters: The New American Autocracy vs. the Will of the People) his advice for running advocacy campaigns, and how he views his role as a mentor to the new generation of antitrust scholars. Listen in.
How One Chef Innovated During COVID
Cheetie Kumar is a musician and a chef, and she owns the Raleigh-based restaurant Garland, the music venue Kings, and the cocktail bar Neptunes. In this episode of TBD, she and Matt sit down to talk about how she innovated as a chef and business owner to keep her businesses alive during COVID. As restaurants faced shutdowns, declining revenue, and health risks to their employees, Cheetie joined with other chefs to create the Independent Restaurant Coalition and advocate with policymakers for relief grants for small restaurants. Congress eventually passed a relief package that included a $28 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund. Listen in.
Hitting really important issues from lots of different (unusual) angles.
Great podcasts by Matt! Thoughtful, insightful and provocative!! Well worth the listen.