Is Netflix a Tech Company or a Media Company? Dr. Amanda Lotz explains why it matters.

Have you ever considered that big tech is not one monopoly but… five monopolies instead? That Netflix, Google, Facebook and Airbnb are not part of a disrupting ‘tech industry’ but… companies that are simply using tech to disrupt their own industries?

In this episode of the Innovation For All Podcast, Sheana Ahlqvist talks to Amanda Lotz, an author, podcaster and professor in the media industry. They discuss why big tech is not actually a monopoly, the different business models these tech companies implement, and how we should encourage these companies to be more transparent.

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR:

? Is big tech really a monopoly?
? Is the big tech monolith a force for good or bad?
? Why are these companies not actual competitors?
? Why is it more beneficial for these companies to compete against each other?
? What are the benefits of monopolisation?
? How should we deal with a company like Google?
? What are the differences between Netflix and Disney?
? How can we define a media industry?
? Is Netflix a media company?
? How can we encourage companies to be more transparent?

Sheana and Amanda also talk about the actual business model of these huge tech companies. Google primarily relies on advertising. Their trick – you get the ads for what you were already searching for. Apple mostly makes money from selling products. Amazon also sells products, but they focus on subscription based income through Amazon Prime. This is actually very different to Netflix, which Amanda explains is an actual media company that has completely disrupted the industry. How? Because Netflix produces and distributes at the same time. Netflix also has a huge amount of data on its users, allowing them to tailor their movies to a user’s specific preferences.

Comparing these business models is fascinating and very interesting to analyse – we see why monopolies can actually be a force for good, what we can expect from them in the future, and why the number one thing they need to focus on is transparency.

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No one taught us how to work. Jake Kahana wants to change that with Caveday.?

Technology can better serve humanity.

In this episode of Innovation For All Podcast, we talk to Jake Kahana, founder of Bettvr With Age and Caveday. Jake shares these two projects that look very different on the surface. In fact, they are united by a common goal: to demonstrate the social impact of technology. Discover how Virtual Reality (VR) can be therapeutic for seniors, why the typical 9-5 work day is a complete fallacy, and how to manage remote teams effectively. You’ll enjoy this episode if you are interested in VR or modernizing the workplace.

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR:?

  • The difference between a social impact agency and cost marketing agency
  • The challenges in producing and distributing VR films
  • 2 significant limitations for senior citizens: mobility and finances
  • The Impact of Bettvr With Age
  • Physical and mental therapy using VR
  • What is Caveday?
  • How to improve your relationship to work
  • The dangers of overwork
  • How to communicate with a remote team
  • How important is establishing rules around communication, scheduling and productivity inside a team
  • 3 Things you need when you work – accountability, motivation, and support
  • Resources your team can use to increase productivity

Undoubtedly, technology isn’t just for the young. It is for all ages – even seniors. This is what Jake is proving to exhibit in his Bettvr with Age project where he produces VR films for senior citizens. Seniors can still experience places and activities that their old age won’t permit them to do and visit through VR.

We also discuss the science of productivity. Through Caveday, Jake and his team are able to organize pieces of training for individuals and companies on how to do deep work since no one taught us how to work. There are ways you can improve your relationship to work to be productive and also avoid overworking. Jake identifies specific resources you can use to support your team’s productivity and happiness.

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When bad data leads to social injustice, featuring David Robinson

Can AI really change the world? Or are its developing algorithms formalizing social injustice? When these highly-technical systems derive patterns from existing datasets, their models can perpetuate past mistakes.

In this episode of the Innovation For All Podcast, Sheana Ahlqvist discusses with David Robinson the threats of social bias and discrimination becoming embedded in Artificial Intelligence.

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL LEARN:

  • What is the role of technological advances in shaping society?
  • What is the difference between Machine Learning vs. Artificial Intelligence?
  • Social Justice Implications of Technology
  • What are the limitations of finding patterns in previous data?
  • How does should government regulate new, highly technical systems?
  • The need for more resources and more thoughtfulness in regulating data
  • Examples of data-driven issues in the private sector.
  • Removing skepticism of regulatory agencies in examining data models.
  • Authorities should remember that there are limits to what AI models can do.

David is the co-founder of Upturn and currently a Visiting Scientist at the AI Policy and Practice Initiative in Cornell’s College of Computing and Information Science. David touches on how government regulatory agencies should examine new AI models and systems, especially as the technology continues to creep its way into our day-to-day lives. David discusses the importance of “ground truthing.” David emphasizes looking at a technology’s capabilities and limits before deciding on whether decision makers should implement it.

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If you enjoy this episode on AI and ethics, you might also enjoy WHEN ARE “FAIR” ALGORITHMS BETTER THAN ACCURATE ONES?

Facebook can do more for working parents.

Are the tech giants doing enough for working parents?

In this episode of the Innovation For All podcast, Eliza Khuner questions whether a 9-to-5 full time work schedule is limiting companies and employees, especially working parents. Eliza is a data scientist who worked at Facebook until she had her third child. She turned her concerns into a company-wide movement for more flexible work options, growing from private talks with HR to a public discussion with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to a viral WIRED article.

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR:

  • Do company standard policies really support working parents?
  • What happened when Eliza confronted Mark Zuckerberg and other Facebook executives with the demand for more flexible options for working parents?
  • Why should companies allow working parents part-time or work from home options?
  • Will this create a loss of culture in the workplace?
  • Are huge talents overlooked because most companies require full-time work?
  • Does creating more flexible solutions create ways to pay people less?

Sheana and Eliza also talk about the loss of workplace culture when there are flexible work options, the need for wellness rooms for breastfeeding mothers, and the support that should be given by companies to working parents. Eliza continues to speak about this so that companies are made aware of the problem and working parents can have the choice to live their lives while staying valuable to their company.

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Others Mentioned

  • Facebook
  • Mark Zuckerberg
  • Google
  • Nextdoor
  • Sherly Sandberg
  • Restorative justice

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VR-training against sexual harassment is not a gimmick, feat. Morgan Mercer of Vantage Point

In this episode of Innovation For All, Sheana Ahlqvist speaks with Morgan Mercer, founder and CEO of Vantage Point. Learn how Vantage Point is using VR to reduce sexual harassment at work through way, way better training.

In this episode you’ll learn:

  • How Vantage Point leverages the benefits VR to combat sexual harassment
  • Examples of subtle & aggressive sexual harassment situations in the workplace
  • Why they take a bystander approach to training

Morgan is product-enthusiast and idealist who founded the Virtual Reality immersive training company Vantage Point in 2017. Prior to founding Vantage Point, she concurrently served as the Head of Digital for an e-commerce startup and an Analyst for a digital agency where she has worked on high-profile contracts focused on attitude change and behavior change within the domain of complex social issues.

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