Attention Control with Kevin Newman

Attention Control with Kevin Newman

Can democracy survive in the age of social media? “Attention Control with Kevin Newman” is a ground-breaking investigative podcast that will delve into the impact of fake news, where it comes from and how it affects voters. Every week during Canada’s federal election campaign, we will bring listeners data-driven investigations that will help separate fact from fiction, as well as timely, in-depth interviews with insiders from the tech industry and their critics.... Show More

Episodes

April 23, 2020 2 min
Big Tech is a bi-weekly podcast that explores how emerging technologies are reshaping the world as we know it. Co-hosts David Skok and Taylor Owen, an AC regular, sit down with leading scholars, policy makers and entrepreneurs, to discuss technology's impact on society - for better or worse.  Season 2 is available now.   Subscribe on:  Apple Podcasts https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/big-tech/id1484910273  Spotify https:/...
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November 5, 2019 28 min
In our series wrap, we trace the history of fake news. We start in 15th century Europe and end in the here and now. We talk to Dr. Jacob Soll who says that the cure to misinformation is more journalism. Society needs what it lost years ago: a strong fourth estate with a local presence.    Sources: Quartz, CNN, Fox News
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This episode, we talk to Liberal MP Nathaniel Erskine-Smith about platforms and privacy - about whether his government will stand-up to big tech. We also talk to friend-of-the-pod, Taylor Owen about the rise of the so-called “splinternet”, a world wide web that looks different depending upon your zip code.
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Forty days later and the ballots are in: Canada will be helmed by a Liberal minority. In this episode, we look back at those forty days and ask -- how did we do in this age of disinformation? Did our institutions weather the storms? McGill’s Taylor Owen gives us his take of the election campaign. We then speak to Farhaan Ladhani of Digital Public Square who has an idea of where engaged citizens need to go next. 
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This episode, we break down the rising “intangible economy”, what our guest Jim Balsillie says is our shared future. We learn what it is, what it values and who it rewards. We also visit StatsCanada and discover why the race to regulate is so fierce. We do what’s never been done before and put a price on Canadian data... The number is big. 
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October 14, 2019 33 min
We’ve all heard about the impact Facebook had on the 2016 US election — but how much do we really know about what was going on? In this episode we talk to people at the centre of the 2016 Cambridge Analytica scandal and ask if psychological profiling really works. And if voters in Canada are being targeted. We also look at the darker side of online targeting —the thousands of abusive tweets hurled at women and candidates of colour ...
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October 8, 2019 31 min
The internet can be a toxic place. Rumours spread like wildfire and put-downs are common parlance. In this episode, we dive into the chaos and ask, who shares false posts and why? Who enjoys a good Twitter spat? We talk to prominent behavioural scientists who say that public discourse and social equality are linked. People f*** shit up online because they feel hard-done-by. They repost fake news stories because the internet enables...
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October 3, 2019 32 min
Since 2014, the number of fact checking outlets worldwide has quadrupled. In this past year alone, we saw a 26% increase in fact checking activity. In this episode, we put the issue to Taylor Owen and meet one of Facebook’s few fact checkers allowed to speak about his work: that’s Will Moy, CEO of Full Fact UK.    Clip sources: CTV, CBC, CNN
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September 30, 2019 36 min
Canadian intelligence agencies are warning that China is among the foreign countries that may try to interfere Canada's election. As protests against the regime spike during the 70th anniversary of China's Communist revolution this week, we speak with Vancouver pro-democracy activist Fenella Sung and a former Canadian diplomat about how the Chinese state may be using Mandarin-language social media to mount hidden campaigns ...
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September 26, 2019 35 min
Kevin sits down with a former political insider who had enough with the way Canadian political parties used our data to manipulate our votes. And Francesca Fionda, AC’s investigative correspondent picks up the phone and finds out what our parties really do know about us. 
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September 23, 2019 29 min
A recent survey found that social media companies are among the least trusted organizations in the world, none more so than Facebook. In this episode, we break down what they are doing to change that, and speak to leading American tech journalist Kara Swisher, who says multibillionaire Silicon Valley CEOs have been allowed to skirt social responsibility for too long. But in an industry that has largely avoided regulation so far, Sw...
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September 16, 2019 33 min
Test one, two, three.. Today Attention Control heads to Elections Canada HQ where Kevin talks to Stéphane Perrault, the Chief Electoral Officer. They talk about data security and election interference. Then we hear from Ben Scott, who worked for Hillary Clinton as lead technology advisor. As you might expect, Ben has some regrets and some advice for Canada. 
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September 12, 2019 37 min
It's official: the writ has dropped. Canada's election is underway. In this AC extra, we sit down with former RIM CEO Jim Balsillie to talk politics and big data. Jim warns us that our democracy is at risk and that social media is in large part to blame. He claims that the business models that underpin today's tech giants have little regard for our civic process. They are designed to maximize profit and to please advert...
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September 9, 2019 38 min
AC investigative correspondent Francesca Fionda returns with another important investigative story: this time, the breach of your personal health data. We follow Francesca to a Vancouver rooftop where she intercepts code sent between ambulances and hospitals; code that contains sensitive information like patient room numbers, active injuries and more. We also meet a future pod regular, McGill researcher Taylor Owen, who wonders whe...
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September 2, 2019 29 min
In the premiere episode of Attention Control with Kevin Newman, Kevin begins his deep dive into the hidden efforts to capture our attention — tactics that are often unseen and little understood. Kevin talks to CTV National News Chief Anchor and Senior Editor Lisa Laflamme about the challenges online misinformation poses for journalists covering the election campaign and for Canadians trying to identify fake news. AC investigative c...
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Attention Control is a new podcast covering the 2019 Canadian federal election through original news and investigative reporting. It is hosted by Emmy-Award-winning journalist Kevin Newman. In episode zero, Kevin Newman explains why he thinks the digital campaigns that will be waged to sway our votes could be the big election story in the coming months.  
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