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What I’m Reading - 9/17/23
I want to start by thanking all of you. While in New York this week, a few of you approached me at events to tell me how much you enjoyed the newsletter. It means so much to me to hear that. Moreover, so many of you are new subscribers, and many of you upgraded to a paid subscription. I crossed a few milestones last week, which means a lot to me two years into writing this.
A special shout-out to my friends at Democracy Works. This is a great organization that collaborates with election officials, leading tech platforms, and world-class partners to drive voter access and participation. Basically, if you search for information on how to vote, what you see is powered by Democracy Works data. I was in NYC for our board meeting, and it’s so awesome to see how hard they are working to get ready for next year. They were also nice enough to suffer through my karaoke singing.
A huge thank you as well to Ben Whitelaw, who writes the excellent newsletter Everything in Moderation. In his latest newsletter, he gave my new podcast, Impossible Tradeoffs, which launches this Thursday, a very nice shout-out. Though I won’t lie, I’m a little nervous about meeting expectations!
Thank you toat too. He also linked to my newsletter this week and has been a long-time supporter. Check out his must-read newsletter that tracks digital spending, strategy, and trends in U.S. elections.
The weather is beautiful this weekend on the shore, and I spent part of Saturday clearing out all the dead garden plants and attempting to do some Fall gardening from seed. I’ve got carrots, onions, shallots, chives, spinach, arugula, and butter lettuce. Fingers crossed, they’ll sprout.
Have a great Sunday.
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My window planters with what I hope will be a nice Fall crop.
What I’m Reading
2024 tsunami of elections
I was very pleased to hear Micosoft’s Brad Smith reference all the elections happening next year not only in the Senate Judiciary hearing but also in his interview with the Politico Tech podcast.
Politico EU: Welcome to the Digital Election Thunderdome
TikTok is back in the news as they restart negotiations with the U.S. government, the first GOP candidate joins the app and Morning Consult finds that Gen Z Uses TikTok and Instagram for News More Than Older Generations.
Politico Magazine: Will Politicians Ban Their Best Way of Reaching Young Voters?
Vivek Ramaswamy: On why he's joining TikTok
From the Courts
The Washington Post: Musk may have violated FTC privacy order, new court filing shows
Department of Homeland Security: DHS Announces New Policies and Measures Promoting Responsible Use of Artificial Intelligence
U.S. Department of State: Appointment of Eileen C. Donahoe as Special Envoy and Coordinator for Digital Freedom
Schumer’s AI Forum
The Washington Post: 3 Takeaways From Senators' Private Huddle With Tech Execs on AI
Washington Examiner: Schumer Says He Will Prioritize Bills on AI and Election Misinformation
The Wall Street Journal: Meta Is Developing a New, More Powerful AI System as the Technology Race Escalates
Tech and Congress
Congrats to those who put together the fifth Congressional Hackathon. I’m bummed I couldn’t go, but I really like FedScoop’s story about some of the history of how it all got started back in 2011 - something I was honored to be a part of.
The Atlantic: What Mitt Romney Saw in the Senate
The Daily Beast: House Dems Aim to Make Overdue Reforms to the FEC
Around the World
Keep an eye on the fact that the main opposition party in India - the Congress Party - announced this week that it will not send its representatives to TV debate shows hosted by 14 news anchors perceived to be close to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
SUBSTACK - Full Disclosure: Interview with Craig Elder - UK digital strategist who used to run the Conservative Party’s online efforts
Scroll.in - The India Fix: Opposition media boycott: Does attacking hate in the media go against principles of free speech?
Scroll.in: Arundhati Roy: The Dismantling of Democracy in India Will Affect the Whole World
The Washington Post: Musk expected to meet with Netanyahu as antisemitism controversy rages
Rest of World: What Elon Musk’s new biography leaves out
Journal of Democracy: AI and Catastrophic Risk
Things that stood out to me from these:
94% of news and politics listeners do not view cable and broadcast TV as authentic and trustworthy
YouTube is the most trusted platform by far
Consumers Like the Idea of Decentralized Social Media — but Only as an Idea
Positivity, Less Politics and More Moderation Work in Threads’ Favor
Ad Age: 2023 Podcast Trends Report
Morning Consult: Social Media Trust and Usage
All Tech Is Human: Responsible Tech Guide - New Version!
Just for fun
I’ve not had the pleasure yet to go to one of these, but it’s now on my must-do list.
The New York Times: Welcome to the World of Competitive Boat Docking
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