Imagine an imminent future where American voters are bombarded with personalized political messages from every smart device ? at home, in cars, on sidewalks; the digital infosphere. Big Data so fine-tuned, no two voters hear the same proposition.
You come home to a hologrammatic, AI-powered Donald Trump chatbot perched in your kitchen, asking personal questions ? knowing everywhere you went, everything you searched, and how much you spent on lunch.
We?re rushing toward this dystopia right now. The digital information age means more than hyper-targeted, just-for-you messages from insurance companies and presidential candidates alike. It means oceans of disinformation engineered to sow false beliefs or simply confuse. Already citizens don?t know who to trust or what to believe. If this keeps up, and we ask nothing more of tech providers or digital citizens, the fog will continue to thicken. Irritation will merge into despair, then numbness... and democracy teeters.
Digital pioneer Cyrus Krohn knows the territory, and in Bombarded: How to Fight Back against the Online Assault on Democracy, Krohn locates the roots of our blooming electoral chaos in the earliest days of the World Wide Web. But he goes beyond recounting 25 years of destabilizing Internet shock waves, not to mention his own role in building digital culture. Krohn rolls out a provocative action plan for rescuing the American system of campaigns and elections while there is still time.