Technology Is Not Neutral by Stephanie Hare

Technology Is Not Neutral by Stephanie Hare – A Short Guide to Technology Ethics – was both very good and very bad. The first part, about 150 pages, was really good. It had great analysis and references, it covered all the world, including places I am less familiar with, such as Japan. I liked reading about China’s Belt and Road Initiative and its technology linked to surveillance and face recognition. The last chapter, on COVID, is where it went wrong. Firstly she mainly talked about England and how bad the government did and how the only way to make sure we don’t have IDs in UK is if another government is elected and so on. I found that strange, mainly because Tony Blair introduced IDs (as she said) and the Tory government scrapped it. It’s unlikely a left-wing party will be less willing to implement things like IDs or COVID passports. In fact, when she compared England to the other three countries in UK, it was the last one to adopt these “passports”. It was such a disappointment for this reason.

Around the world, Left-wing parties favour more government involvement, while right-wing parties less. Obviously I’m talking about centrist parties and not far-left or far-right. If you agree with that or not, that’s beside the point.

Technology Is Not Neutral by Stephanie Hare

For me this book failed to impress because it ended so badly. From a global perspective analysing what happens, she went on to focus on a narrow subject and made some assumptions that were not backed by anything, data or ideology. Going back to the example of the covid passports, in Wales these were implemented before England and in Wales is a Labour First Minister. So, it’s not hard to imagine that an England under Labour would have had a similar program with COVID passports. Also, there is not an overview of what happened in the other European countries, at least. What kind of passports, if any, were there in France or Germany or Spain? What did they record? As far as I remember there were some apps if you wanted to travel.

I was so annoyed because I just loved most of the book, with the exception of the chapter on covid. Even more, I was really excited about that one particular chapter because I wanted to see a comparison with, at least, some EU countries. It was such a wasted opportunity.

Technology Is Not Neutral by Stephanie Hare

Details about the picture: –
My rating: 3/5 Stars
Would I recommend it: yes
Published by: ‎London Publishing Partnership
Year it was published: 2022
Format: Hardcover
Genre(s): IT
Pages: 288

About the author: Stephanie Hare got her PhD from LSE on a historical topic. She worked at Accenture, Oxford Analytica, before becoming self-employed. She now writes in newspapers such as Financial Times, The Washington Post, the Guardian/Observer, WIRED.
Website & Social Media Links: –

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