"A timely, compelling, and expertly researched passport to the tech companies that rule today's digital landscape."—Blake Harris, bestselling author of Console Wars and The History of the Future.
In this provocative book about our new tech-based reality, political insider and tech expert Alexis Wichowski considers the unchecked rise of tech giants like Facebook, Google, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, and Tesla—what she calls “net states”— and their unavoidable influence in our lives. Rivaling nation states in power and capital, today’s net states are reaching into our physical world, inserting digital services into our lived environments in ways both unseen and, at times, unknown to us. They are transforming the way the world works, putting our rights up for grabs, from personal privacy to national security.
Combining original reporting and insights drawn from more than 100 interviews with technology and government insiders, including Microsoft president Brad Smith, Google CEO Eric Schmidt, the former Federal Trade Commission chair under President Obama, and the managing director of Jigsaw—Google’s Department of Counter-terrorism against extremism and cyber-attacks—The Information Trade explores what happens we give up our personal freedom and individual autonomy in exchange for an easy, plugged-in existence, and shows what we can do to control our relationship with net states before they irreversibly change our future.