A few days ago a new podcast with the title “The Gatekeepers” was published on BBC Radio 4. A podcast with and by author and journalist Jamie Bartlett in which he traces the story of how and why social media have become the new information gatekeepers.
I have been in touch with Jamie a couple of times, as well as now again, to get him to Berlin’s edition of my event, and know of him through his published books such as The Dark Net (2014), Radicals [< affiliate link] (2017), The People Vs Tech: How the Internet Is Killing Democracy (2018) or last but not least The Missing Cryptoqueen [< affiliate link] (2022). All well worth reading. Next to this, I am subscribed to his newsletter “How to survive the Internet” on Substack.
Yesterday I got notice, that he started a new podcast titled The Gatekeepers and so far I have listened to the first two episodes. The description of the introduction episode reads as follows:
It all started with a crazy idea to realise a hippie dream of building a “global consciousness”. The plan was to build a connected world, where everyone could access everyone and everything all the time; to overthrow the old gatekeepers and set information free.
But social media didn’t turn out that way. Instead of setting information free – a new digital elite conquered the world and turned themselves into the most powerful people on the planet.
Now, they get to decide what billions of us see every day. They can amplify you. They can delete you. Their platforms can be used to coordinate social movements and insurrections. A content moderator thousands of miles away can change your life. What does this mean for democracy – and our shared reality?
Jamie Bartlett traces the story of how and why social media have become the new information gatekeepers, and what the decisions they make mean for all of us.
Sounds exciting, doesn’t it? And so far, first two episodes in, I find it an exciting podcast with a very interesting topic.
But listen yourself: The Gatekeepers with Jamie Bartlett on BBC (or on any podcasting platform of your choice) …