A Rotary Club of Portland Interview
The Oregon Ethics in Business committee hosted this fascinating conversation about the impact of technological policies on today’s society during the October 12th luncheon. Matt Perault, the director of the Center on Technology Policy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, drew on his varied experience at Facebook, the Congressional Oversight Panel, Duke University and UNC to discuss the societal impact of issues-based decision making in tech policy—such as human rights, antitrust, surveillance and the Snowden disclosures at Facebook.
Questions from the discussion.
Below is a list of the questions and discussion points of the conversation between Matt and Amy:
A rundown on what is happening currently at Facebook. Matt discussed former Facebook data scientist Frances Haugen’s testimony at the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Data Security.
Amy asked Matt to talk about the alleged problems at Facebook and why he thinks that legislation is unlikely.
Matt doesn’t think legislation will occur, but what about regulation?
A discussion on big vs small political campaigns and misinformation, the “little guys” (political campaigns without a lot of money) and the first amendment.
Matt was asked to talk about his time at Facebook, what he learned and why he switched to academia.
Amy asked Matt what policy reforms could be enacted now to help with technology today?
A discussion around GDPR and Section 230 (a provision from 1996 law that allows online services to host content without being liable for what users say).
Amy asked Matt where do ethics come into play and Matt provide the example that if you want to work in a mission-driven organization that may be found in a company versus a nonprofit.
Matt also provided a discussion on how to make decisions, especially gray area decisions where there is not a black and white answer.
The event finished with questions from the audience.
Watch a recording of the event
Here is a recording of the event from the Rotary Club of Portland if you prefer to watch that:
About the guest: Matt Perault
Matt Perault is the Director of the Center on Technology Policy at the University of North Carolina and previously led Duke University’s Center on Science & Technology Policy. Previously, Matt served as Facebook’s head of global policy development, addressing issues such as: human rights, antitrust, surveillance and the Snowden disclosures. Before that, Matt was Counsel at the Congressional Oversight Panel, created during the financial crisis of 2008 to oversee the U.S. Treasury’s stabilization of the financial system. Matt hosts the TBD: Technology By Design podcast and routinely writes for Slate magazine.
Connect and follow Matt on social media:
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