politics & society | October 04, 2019

How the Alt-Right Exploited a Democratic and Free Internet: The New Yorker’s Andrew Marantz Explains

Andrew Marantz’ first book Antisocial has been described as a “searching study of the right-wing gate-crashers who have overwhelmed social media in the Trump Era” (Kirkus Reviews). In a new interview with Longform podcast, Marantz reveals what inspired him to write the book, and why he doesn’t shy away from the tough questions. 

In Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation, Andrew Marantz reveals how the boundaries between technology, media, and politics have been eradicated. Ideas once relegated to the fringe of society have now become mainstream—even presidentially endorsed—thanks to a modern-day communications crisis unleashed by online radicalization, reckless social media, and the exploitation of the Internet.


“[Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey] wanted to make money, they wanted to make people addicted to their products, just like any good business person would want to do. There were no checks on them, in a way that if you were making another addictive product like opioids or cigarettes, there would be,” Marantz explains. “Facebook is 2.3 billion people now. By the time you come in ex post facto and try to make rules, it’s a little bit too late.”


Listen to the full conversation, here.


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