Medium – Amazon is Just Walmart on Digital Drugs

In December 2013, a group of protestors in Oakland, California attacked a private Google shuttle bus that was taking Google employees from their Bay Area homes to their offices at Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, 40 miles south. The protestors smashed one of the bus’s windows and blocked the bus from moving forward, holding up a banner that read “FUCK OFF GOOGLE.” The protestors also handed out flyers to the frightened Google employees that read, in part:   read more »

Big Think – Are Google, Uber, and Digital Companies Trapped by Colonial Economics?

Douglas Rushkoff joins the rank of French economist Thomas Piketty in expressing skepticism about free market capitalism in the digital age. Groundbreaking companies like Google, Amazon, and Uber operate using a "scorched Earth" method of value creation, says Rushkoff, which resembles 13th century colonialism. To make money, they extract value from communities rather than create it, much like conquistadors would extract precious metals from South American nations. If that sounds like a hyperbolic statement to you, you are probably not alone.   read more »

Boing Boing – Amazon is Just Walmart on Digital Steroids

I'm a research director at Institute for the Future, and I interviewed author Douglas Rushkoff about his latest book, Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus: How Growth Became the Enemy of Prosperity. It's a terrific look at the way the current system of wealth creation is rigged against everyone but the financial gatekeepers at the top of the food chain. More importantly, he offers some great suggestions for ways to make the system more fair for everybody.   read more »

Digital Trends – Dial 1 for Euphoria

One algorithm makes you smaller, and one makes you tall. But the ones the FDA gives you won’t do anything at all – not without a prescription, anyway. Welcome to the brave new world of electrotherapy stimulation.   read more »

Seeking Alpha – Review of ‘Throwing Rocks’

Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus and Raw Deal summarize the good and bad news and the backlash brewing against Silicon Valley's approach to IT innovation. Authors Douglas Rushkoff and Steven Hill level well-researched critiques of Uber, Airbnb, Task Rabbit, Mechanical Turk and similar electronic platforms promoting as the "sharing economy". Such applications of IT do increase narrowly defined economic efficiency. As digitization overtakes ever more sectors of industrial societies, there are too few broad analyses of the nature of these disruptive technologies, whom they benefit, and how they are restructuring every aspect of our lives.   read more »

Corporate Growth for the Sake of Corporate Growth

Read this piece at The Atlantic On at least one level, Bernie Sanders remains right: Billionaires are getting richer as everyone else gets poorer. Yes, the top one-tenth of 1 percent own nearly as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent, but the problem is, Sanders stops his rhetoric right there. Such statements lead both […]   read more »