MCSI Lecture: Siva Vaidhyanathan: “Antisocial Media: How Facebook Disconnects Us and Undermines Democracy”

September 17, 2018

Siva Vaidhyanathan
Robertson Professor of Modern Media Studies and Director of the Center for Media and Citizenship at the University of Virginia

In this talk, Siva Vaidhyanathan explains how Facebook devolved from an innocent social site hacked together by Harvard students into a force that, while it may make personal life just a little more pleasurable, makes democracy a lot more challenging. It’s an account of the hubris of good intentions, a missionary spirit, and an ideology that sees computer code as the universal solvent for all human problems. And it’s an indictment of how “social media” has fostered the deterioration of democratic culture around the world, from facilitating Russian meddling in support of Trump’s election to the exploitation of the platform by murderous authoritarians in Burma and the Philippines.

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