Tuesday, March 24, 7pm
Left Bank Books
Following recommendations from the CDC, we regret that this event is POSTPONED.
Left Bank Books presents author Rob Larson who will sign and discuss his new critique on the Big Five of the tech world, Bit Tyrants.
For all their famed disruption of the economy, Big Tech’s secret sauce turns out to be Capitalism’s standard issue blend of exploitation and corporate maleficence.
If the stories they tell about themselves are to be believed, all of the tech giants—Apple, Google, Microsoft, Facebook, and Amazon—were built from the ground up through hard work, a few good ideas, and the entrepreneurial daring to seize an opportunity when it presented itself.
With searing wit and blistering commentary Bit Tyrants provides an urgent corrective to this froth of board room marketing copy that is so often passed off as analysis. For fans of corporate fairy-tales there are no shortage of official histories that celebrate the innovative genius of Steve Jobs, liberal commentators who fall over themselves to laude Bill Gates's selfless philanthropy, or politicians who will tell us to listen to Mark Zuckerberg for advice on how to protect our democracy from foreign influence.
In this highly unauthorized account of the Big Five's origins, Rob Larson sets the record straight, and in the process shreds every focus-grouped bromide about corporate benevolence he could get his hands on. Those readers unwilling to smile and nod as every day we become more dependent on our phones and apps to do our chores, our jobs, and our socializing can take heart as Larson provides us with maps to all the shallow graves, skeleton filled closets, and invective laced emails Big Tech left behind on its ascent to power. His withering analysis will help readers crack the code of the economic dynamics that allowed these companies to become near-monopolies very early on, and, with a little bit of luck, his calls for digital socialism might just inspire a viral movement for online revolution.
Rob Larson is Professor of Economics at Tacoma Community College and author of Capitalism vs. Freedom and Bleakonomics. He writes for a number of venues including Current Affairs, Dollars & Sense and Jacobin.
This event is free and open to the public, but proof of purchase of Bit Tyrants from Left Bank Books will be required to enter the signing line.
Parking: Lot one block north; street parking (meters free after 7pm). For directions and public transportation information, click here.