Former employees of Facebook & Google join hands to fight tech addiction

Marlene Weaver
February 7, 2018

US-based organization Common Sense Media has joined forces with the Center for Humane Technology to launch Truth About Tech, a new campaign created to combat digital and social media addictions among kids.

In extra to cash raised by the Center for Humane Technology, Common Sense is setting up $7 million in financing for the battle. The campaign has partnered with Comcast and DirecTV who have donated media and airtime.

READ NEXT:Intel is working on smart glasses you could actually wear The Center for Humane Technology intends to use its collective "inside knowledge" of how tech companies operate to push the industry towards "humane design". Former vice president of Facebook user growth Chamath Palihapitiya has expressed remorse for his part. By the way, we knew when we did that that was probably decrease the amount of time spent on our platform and it did. On its website, the Center explains how modern apps and services are engineered to grab attention and intentionally addict us. The people making the case should know, as they are founders and developers of Facebook, Google, Apple, Mozilla, and other lynchpins of the technology and social boom.

Reflections on the ill effects of technology are now coming from different quarters at increasing frequency.

It will focus on 55,000 U.S. schools, aiming to teach students, parents and teachers about the side-effects of too much technology use. In January, two big Wall Street investors asked Apple to study the health effects of its products and to make it easier to limit children's use of iPhones and iPads.

A group of ex-Facebook and Google workers, along with venture capital execs, are campaigning to stop their former employers from further screwing up humanity.

"Tech companies are conducting a massive, real-time experiment on our kids, and, at present, no one is really holding them accountable", James P. Steyer, CEO and founder of Common Sense, said in a statement.

The news follows increased attention to the downside of widely popular tech products like Facebook.

Two former employees of Google and Facebook have launched a campaign to fight what they see as the addictive nature of the technology they helped to create.

Tech organizations "made the consideration economy and are presently occupied with an all out weapons contest to catch and hold human consideration, including the consideration of children", Center for Humane Technology fellow benefactor and Executive Director Tristan Harris said in an announcement Monday. They speak of Facebook "ripping apart the social fabric"; of it appealing to users' "lizard brain - primarily fear and anger".

In an interview with CNN International's Maggie Lake last week, Facebook investor McNamee said, "profits definitely come before people at Facebook now".

[With smartphones, ] they've got you for every waking moment.
It will initially focus on two pieces of legislation: a bill being introduced by Senator Edward J. Markey, Democrat of MA, that would commission research on technology's impact on children's health, and a bill in California by State Senator Bob Hertzberg, a Democrat, which would prohibit the use of digital bots without identification.

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