Latest News

See the latest news, highlights, presentations and press releases on Center for Humane Technology and the topics we’re watching.

Our Podcast

Technology companies are locked in an arms race to seize your attention. Our podcast exposes how this race is tearing apart our shared social fabric and hurtling humanity toward existential crisis as we become increasingly polarized, confused, and incapable of solving problems together, at any level. We also offer solutions for what we can all do.

26 - Are the Kids Alright?

We are in the midst of a teen mental health crisis. NYU social psychologist Jonathan Haidt has spent the last few years trying to figure out why, working with fellow psychologist Jean Twenge, and he believes social media is to blame.

October 27, 2020

25-Your Nation’s Attention for the Price of a Used Car

Today’s extremists don’t need highly produced videos like ISIS. They don’t need deep pockets like Russia. With the right message, a fringe organization can reach the majority of a nation’s Facebook users for the price of a used car. Our guest, Zahed Amanullah, knows this firsthand.

October 6, 2020

Bonus - The Social Dilemma

A new documentary, The Social Dilemma comes out on Netflix today, September 9, 2020.

September 9, 2020

CHT Snapshot

Key writings, presentations and interviews from CHT.

Media Kit

Pull Quotes
attributable to
Tristan Harris

What is Wrong with Technology?

The father of sociobiology EO Wilson said the issue with humanity is that we have paleolithic brains, medieval institutions and god-like tech.

While futurists were looking for the moment when technology would surpass human strengths, our IQ, and steal our jobs, we missed the earlier point where technology surpassed human weaknesses.​

2.7 billion people are under technology's psychological influence for hours a day. As technology becomes exponentially more powerful, it overwhelms our innate human limits.

Social media has created an uncontrollable digital Frankenstein​.

Today’s tech platforms are caught in a race to the bottom of the brain stem to extract human attention. It's a race we're all losing.

Attention Economy & Attention Capitalism

In the same way that in industrial capitalism, a whale is worth more dead than alive, a tree is worth more as lumber than as a living tree, In the attention capitalist model, a human being is worth more if they're addicted, outraged, polarized, disinformed and narcissistic because that's better for producing effects in human attention.

When we aren't paying for the product, we are the product.

Free is the most expensive business model we've ever created. ​We're getting “free” destruction of our shared truth, “free” outrage-ification of politics, “free” social isolation, “free” downgrading of critical thinking.

The business model of selling manipulation for profit is increasingly dangerous.

Human Downgrading

Human downgrading is downgrading our well-being, sense-making, democracy, and ability to tackle complex global challenges.

Human downgrading is the global climate change of culture.

Giving a name to the connected systems – the entire surface area – of human downgrading is crucial​ because without it, solution creators end up working in silos and attempt to solve the problem by playing an infinite game of “whack-a-mole.”

Profits from Harms

Sometimes when I look at Susan Wojcicki, Mark Zuckerberg – it’s like watching a hostage in a hostage video. When you have a business model that's profiting from the demise of our children in the next generation – they can’t even think these thoughts.

Freedom of speech is not the same as freedom of reach.

Team Bios

Tristan Harris

Co-Founder & President

BioCalled the “closest thing Silicon Valley has to a conscience” by The Atlantic magazine, Tristan was the former Design Ethicist at Google. He is a world expert on how technology steers us all, leaving Google to engage the issue publicly. Tristan spent over a decade understanding subtle psychological forces, from his childhood as a magician, to working with the Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab, to his role as CEO of Apture, which was acquired by Google. Tristan has been sounding the alarm about technology’s dark sides before most of the world caught on, according to Bloomberg, having been featured on 60 Minutes, TED, the PBS News Hour and more. He has worked with major technology CEOs and briefed Heads of State and other political leaders. He is the co-host of the podcast, “Your Undivided Attention.”

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Aza Raskin

Co-Founder & Program Advisor

Trained as a mathematician and dark matter physicist, Aza is also the co-founder of Earth Species Project, an open-source collaborative nonprofit dedicated to decoding animal communication. He has taken three companies from founding to acquisition, is a co-chairing member of the World Economic Forum’s Global AI Counsel, helped found Mozilla Labs, was named FastCompany’s Master of Design, and listed on Forbes and Inc Magazines 30-under-30.

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Randima (Randy) Fernando

Co-Founder & Executive Director

Randy Fernando brings a values-driven mix of management, technology, and nonprofit backgrounds. For 7 years, he was Executive Director at Mindful Schools, a nonprofit he helped grow from a fledgling organization to a leader in the mindfulness field, training nearly a million children and over 20,000 educators in mindfulness. Prior to that, Randy spent 7 years leading many award-winning projects at NVIDIA, including authoring three books on advanced 3D computer graphics and managing multiple software products. Randy also serves on the board of Spirit Rock Meditation Center.

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Rebecca Lendl

Chief Operating Officer

Over the last 20 years, Rebecca has spent her career supporting visionary artists and thinkers in reimagining how we think, connect, and live. Rebecca has worked with New York arts organizations Creative Time and MoMA PS1 on large-scale experimental public art and events; More recently, she helped grow the community at Headlands Center for the Arts, an international contemporary arts center in the Marin Headlands, and supported the open web at Creative Commons. With a passion for building things, Rebecca has raised millions of dollars for social change, bringing together people, ideas, and shared purpose to advance new ways of thinking.

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Headshots of Tristan Harris