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The Information Trade: How Tech Companies Act LikeCountries
The Information Trade tells the story of how Big Tech acts like countries.
Tracing Big Tech's expansion into areas formerly solely run by governments -- such as defense, diplomacy, public infrastructure, and citizen services -- this book traces this shift through extensive research, original reporting, and in-depth interviews with global leaders. It offers a clear picture on why this matters for our lives and our world. With country-sized powers and none of their checks on how it's used, The Information Trade is a wake-up call that citizens, societies, and governments urgently need. It concludes with concrete ways we can use, right now, leveraging powers individuals, communities, and nation-states already have. Big Tech's metamorphosis from companies with market power to "net states" with geopolitical power only continues to accelerate -- this book offers ways to make sure we don't lose democracy as a way of life as it does.
"This erudite analysis should be required reading"
- Publishers Weekly
"An excellent, provocative, and even visionary book on the role of tech in traditionally government spheres of activity"
- Mark Fowler, former Chair, Federal Communications Commission
"As an AI leader in the tech industry...I’ve read most major books related to big tech. Many are hyper-partisan. Most are insightful in some respects but have a major bias or are narrow and miss an important piece of the puzzle. Few dare to venture substantive solutions. The Information Trade improves on all of these. Wichowski presents a clear and unique viewpoint that integrates these seemingly inconsistent—but clearly correct—viewpoints into a coherent story that captures the problem with a nuance and constructively positive outlook I haven’t seen anywhere"
- Chad Mills, AI / ML engineer (formerly Facebook, Twitter, Grammarly)
"Eminently accessible, deeply researched exploration"
- Kirkus Reviews
"Authoritative yet accessible, friendly, and direct"
- Washington Independent Review of Books
"Timely, compelling, and expertly researched passport to the tech companies that rule today’s digital landscape"
- Blake Harris, author, Console Wars
"Wichowski offers an important framework for how new digital reality is shaping power structures, locally and globally"
- Denmark's (and world's first) Tech Ambassador Casper Klynge
"Wichowski is a wonderfully tireless investigator of the Internet’s Great Powers" - Scott Malcomson, author, Splinternet
"One of the most seminal & important books on the impact of Big Tech in the world today”
- Giles Crouch, digital anthropologist
"Many will speak to futurists and futurism and say these types of people are before their time. Alexis Wichowski is not before her time. She is right on time" - JA Cinman, Complexity Adventures
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