Attention Control with Kevin Newman

Attention Control with Kevin Newman

Ever since the Cambridge Analytica scandal exposed the stunning scale of attempts to obtain voter data in an attempt to subvert the democratic process, countries around the world have been scrambling to figure out how to protect elections, and Canada is no different. That’s why during the 2019 federal election campaign, “Attention Control” podcast will provide listeners with reliable, data-driven information to distinguish what’s real from what’s fake and reveal the impact of misinformation on our vote.

Veteran journalist Kevin Newman leads a team of award-winning journalists that will bring you exclusive investigations exposing how your personal privacy is being invaded to harvest your data, and how that data is being used in targeted campaigns to influence how you think and how you will vote. We will explain how social media platforms you use, businesses you patronize, even government agencies are selling, sharing, or simply leaving your most sensitive personal information vulnerable to malicious outside actors.

“Attention Control” will also engage listeners with timely and thought-provoking interviews with tech industry insiders, privacy advocates, and government officials charged with protecting the integrity of the election. Through a ground-breaking partnership with McGill University researchers, “Attention Control” will gain unprecedented access to a trove of social media data to track misinformation, what Canadians are sharing online, and how it is influencing the campaign.

  • July 29 - The Jamil Jivani Show - Hour 2

    Logan Ury - Director of Relationship Science at Hinge, author of How to Not Die Alone, and previously ran Google’s behavioural science team.  "Jessie’s Girl” by Rick Springfield, and if you were driving around on this day in 1981, you’d very likely hear it on the radio. It was the number one song on the charts this day in 1981. ThrowBack Thursday - We’re looking back at a royal wedding that was viewed by hundreds of millions of people around the world! Charles and Diana. Later in the show we are joined by Victoria Arbiter - Royal Commentator 
  • Introducing "Big Tech"

    Big Tech is a bi-weekly podcast that explores how emerging technologies are reshaping the world as we know it. Co-hosts David Skok and Taylor Owen, an AC regular, sit down with leading scholars, policy makers and entrepreneurs, to discuss technology's impact on society - for better or worse.  Season 2 is available now.   Subscribe on:  Apple Podcasts  Spotify  or wherever you get your podcasts.   
  • The History of Misinformation

    In our series wrap, we trace the history of fake news. We start in 15th century Europe and end in the here and now. We talk to Dr. Jacob Soll who says that the cure to misinformation is more journalism. Society needs what it lost years ago: a strong fourth estate with a local presence. 


    Sources: Quartz, CNN, Fox News

  • Digital governance: where does Canada stand?

    This episode, we talk to Liberal MP Nathaniel Erskine-Smith about platforms and privacy - about whether his government will stand-up to big tech. We also talk to friend-of-the-pod, Taylor Owen about the rise of the so-called “splinternet”, a world wide web that looks different depending upon your zip code.

  • Election 43: how did we fare and where do we go from here?

    Forty days later and the ballots are in: Canada will be helmed by a Liberal minority. In this episode, we look back at those forty days and ask -- how did we do in this age of disinformation? Did our institutions weather the storms? McGill’s Taylor Owen gives us his take of the election campaign. We then speak to Farhaan Ladhani of Digital Public Square who has an idea of where engaged citizens need to go next. 

  • Patents over plants: the intangible economy

    This episode, we break down the rising “intangible economy”, what our guest Jim Balsillie says is our shared future. We learn what it is, what it values and who it rewards. We also visit StatsCanada and discover why the race to regulate is so fierce. We do what’s never been done before and put a price on Canadian data... The number is big. 

  • Our brains on Facebook

    We’ve all heard about the impact Facebook had on the 2016 US election — but how much do we really know about what was going on? In this episode we talk to people at the centre of the 2016 Cambridge Analytica scandal and ask if psychological profiling really works. And if voters in Canada are being targeted. We also look at the darker side of online targeting —the thousands of abusive tweets hurled at women and candidates of colour and how it impacts our democracy. 

  • F*** this shit up

    The internet can be a toxic place. Rumours spread like wildfire and put-downs are common parlance. In this episode, we dive into the chaos and ask, who shares false posts and why? Who enjoys a good Twitter spat? We talk to prominent behavioural scientists who say that public discourse and social equality are linked. People f*** shit up online because they feel hard-done-by. They repost fake news stories because the internet enables lazy thinking. Tune in to learn how we can tackle both problems.  

  • Fact Checking the Fact Checkers

    Since 2014, the number of fact checking outlets worldwide has quadrupled. In this past year alone, we saw a 26% increase in fact checking activity. In this episode, we put the issue to Taylor Owen and meet one of Facebook’s few fact checkers allowed to speak about his work: that’s Will Moy, CEO of Full Fact UK. 


    Clip sources: CTV, CBC, CNN

  • The China Question

    Canadian intelligence agencies are warning that China is among the foreign countries that may try to interfere Canada's election. As protests against the regime spike during the 70th anniversary of China's Communist revolution this week, we speak with Vancouver pro-democracy activist Fenella Sung and a former Canadian diplomat about how the Chinese state may be using Mandarin-language social media to mount hidden campaigns in Canada.