Think: Digital Futures

Think: Digital Futures tells stories from the digital age.

Each episode explores how today’s technology is transforming tomorrow — from our biology, habits, relationships, spaces to our place in the universe.

The NBN rollout is nearly complete across rural and regional Australia and with it the promise to shrink the digital divide. But it still doesn’t feel that way for many regional Australians still struggling with poor internet speeds and connectivity.

This episode we meet the people building independent internet networks for their local community. We meet John Sinclair from the Kangaroo Valley Broadband Network and Tim and Aaron from rural SA and Tassie respectively. We also chat to Robin Braun (University of Technology Sydney) and Nicole Sutton (UTS) about whether the technology will work, and how the NBN became a political football.

Whoever controls the data controls the story. Across the globe, Indigenous peoples are coming together to take control of the data collected “about” them but not “for” them. How can data be used to help rather than problematise?

We chat to Maggie Walter (University of Tasmania) about the perceived threat of sovereignty and Bhiamie Williamson (Australian National University) about just saying "no" to data collection.

A reflection on time, and how we mediate it through digital technology. Thanks to Tara and Andrew McLennan. 

How are your Facebook posts impacting the health of the planet? It might sound like a contradiction in terms but this episode from Think: Sustainability’s Jake Morcom explores the environmental impact of online data.

Jake chats to Ella Barclay, an artist and graduate student at the University of Technology Sydney; Senior Analyst Rodney Getta; and Lecturer Tanya Notley from the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University.

On April 25th 2018, 25 year old Alex Minassian drove a passenger van into pedestrians on a crowded Toronto footpath, killing 10 people and injuring 16 others. Moments before the attack Minassian posted a message on his facebook shedding light on his motive. The message voiced admiration for a man who killed six college students in California in 2014, and announced his allegiance to a internet hate group called the incels, short for “involuntary celibate”.

In this episode we hear from Heidi Matthews who teaches in international criminal law (Osgoode Hall Law School), we look at the history of online misogyny with former journalist and researcher Emma A. Jane (University of New South Wales), and talk about the problematic nature of letting incels define themselves with Dr Ramona Vijeyarasa (University of Technology Sydney).

Producer: Miles Herbert and Cheyne Anderson.