Information pollution: a companion to The Cleaners

I was honoured to be invited to give a pre-screening talk for the Kamloops Film Society’s presentation of The Cleaners.



Audio: (42:42 28MB MP3)


My presentation slides and references are below.



Tarleton Gillespie, “The Scale is Just Unfathomable”

CBC Spark: “Your photos can be used in ‘catfishing’ romance scams”

Alec Couros, “Information for romance scam victims

Alan Levine, “Inside the (Weird) World of Facebook Catfishing (Part Deux With More Shame)

Samanth Subramanian, “The Macedonian Teens Who Mastered Fake News”

James Bridle, “Something is wrong on the internet”

James Bridle, “How Peppa Pig became a video nightmare for children”

Jacob Brogan, “What is an algorithm? An explainer.”

Cathy O’Neil, Weapons of Math Destruction

Ian Bogost, “The Cathedral of Computation”

Bruce Sterling, “State of the World, 2012”

Chris Gillard, “An #OER17 Provocation”

Shoshana Zuboff, “Big Other: Surveillance Capitalism and the Prospects of an Information Civilization”

Dylan Curran, “Are you ready? Here is all the data Facebook and Google have on you”

Associated Press, “Google records your location even when you tell it not to”

Sean Gallagher, “Facebook scraped call, text message data for years from Android phones”

Kaveh Waddell, “Your Phone Is Listening—Literally Listening—to Your TV”

Leo Mirani and Max Nisen, “The nine companies that know more about you than Google or Facebook”

University of Cambridge Research, “Computers using digital footprints are better judges of personality than friends and family”

CNN, “How Steve Bannon used Cambridge Analytica to further his alt-right vision for America”

Wall Street Journal: Facebook: Blue Feed – Red Feed

Robinson Meyer, “Could Facebook Have Caught Its ‘Jew Hater’ Ad Targeting?

Sheera Frenkel, New York Times, “Facebook to End News Feed Experiment in 6 Countries That Magnified Fake News”

Emily Glazer, Deepa Seetharaman, AnnaMaria Andriotis,  “Facebook to Banks: Give Us Your Data, We’ll Give You Our Users

Olivia Solon, The Guardian,  “Facebook asks users for nude photos in project to combat ‘revenge porn’

Suzanne Barlyn, Reuters,  “Strap on the Fitbit: John Hancock to sell only interactive life insurance

Alex Hern, The Guardian,  “Fitness tracking app Strava gives away location of secret US army bases

Esther Kaplan, Harper’s, “The Spy Who Fired Me: The human costs of workplace monitoring

Audrey Watters, “The Weaponization of Education Data

Craig Desson, CBC, “As Google for Education tools enter classrooms across Canada, some parents are asking to opt-out

EFF, Privacy Badger

Middlebury College Digital Learning and Inquiry (DLINQ), Digital Detox 2018

Mike Caulfield, Web Literacy for Student Fact Checkers

Mike Caulfield, “Today’s Reverse Image Challenge: Forced Prayer

Mike Caulfield, Four Moves

Mike Caulfield, Context on Civix online media literacy videos


2 thoughts on “Information pollution: a companion to The Cleaners

  1. Wow!

    What a set of references to refer back to – so generous to share this out. I will surely use this as a resource to dip into myself. In the interests of sharing, here’s a couple of other creepy old-time favourites:

    “Facebook Figured Out My Family Secrets, And It Won’t Tell Me How” –

    “AI Talent screening to prevent brand risk” –

    I’ve no doubt your talk is going to be brilliant this evening based on this evidence.

    1. Thanks very much for the reference to the Gillespie article on content moderation – it is a perfect complement to the movie. And both those links you just shared are also amazing. I love how FB won’t discuss its techniques for “privacy reasons”. And wow Fama: “help ensure that when it comes to your employees, you don’t miss a thing.”

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