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  • The Chaos Machine

  • The Inside Story of How Social Media Rewired Our Minds and Our World
  • By: Max Fisher
  • Narrated by: Peter Ganim
  • Length: 15 hrs and 54 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (19 ratings)

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The Chaos Machine

By: Max Fisher
Narrated by: Peter Ganim
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Summary

How social media is hacking our minds, our societies and the world—and what we can do about it.

The Chaos Machine is the story of how the world was driven mad by social media. The election of populists like Trump and Bolsonaro; strife and genocide in countries like Myanmar, the rampant spread of COVID-19 conspiracy theories as deadly as the pandemic itself, all of these are products of a breakdown in our social and political lives, a breakdown driven by the apps, companies and algorithms that compete constantly for our attention.

Max Fisher is a leading New York Times technology reporter whose work has covered the way that social media sites—driven increasingly by artificial intelligence rather than human ingenuity—push users towards more and more extreme positions, deepening the divisions in society in pursuit of greater engagement and profit. With extraordinary access to the most powerful players in Silicon Valley, and with testimonies from around the world of the havoc being wreaked by our online selves, The Chaos Machine shows us how we got to this uniquely perilous moment—and how we might get out of it.

©2022 Max Fisher (P)2022 Hachette Audio

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  • 10-10-22

Please Read

Everything in here is both unsurprising and utterly shocking. A version of this story should be on every high school syllabus.

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Begins well then veers off leftwards

This is a very good history and analysis of how social media companies have manipulated their users for profit. However, without fail, the message that comes through is that all the problems are on the right. In recent years the biggest problem on social media has been the behaviour of woke activists and the rise of cancel culture, a topic on which very interesting debates can be held, and conclusions drawn, concerning the behaviour of social media companies. None of this is mentioned, but then again, the author is an investigative reporter for the NYT so I guess that is to be expected. That said, it is definitely worth a listen.

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  • Armand Jarri
  • 03-11-22

Good research. Very repetitive nad boring

This is a well researched book but it ia utterly boring and repetitive. Narration is the worse. Robotic.

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  • Tom Dawkins
  • 23-10-22

An essential book to understand the world today

This is a harrowing and illuminating book. It explains so many of the dynamics we see around us, from increasing polarization to the popularity of conspiracy theories to the dysfunction of politics and collapse of mainstream media. Highly recommended.