Our Biggest Fight: Reclaiming Liberty, Humanity, and Dignity in the Digital Age (Hardcover)

Our Biggest Fight: Reclaiming Liberty, Humanity, and Dignity in the Digital Age By Frank H. McCourt, Jr., Michael J. Casey (With) Cover Image
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NATIONAL BESTSELLER • The internet as we know it is broken. Here’s how we can seize back control of our lives from the corporate algorithms and create a better internet—before it’s too late.

“In the spirit of Thomas Paine’s Revolution-era Common Sense, this manifesto challenges us to create new digital architectures to safeguard democracy.”—Walter Isaacson, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Elon Musk

It was once a utopian dream. But today’s internet, despite its conveniences and connectivity, is the primary cause of a pervasive unease that has taken hold in the U.S. and other democratic societies. It’s why youth suicide rates are rising, why politics has become toxic, and why our most important institutions are faltering.
Information is the lifeblood of any society, and our current system for distributing it is corrupted at its heart. Everything comes down to our ability to communicate openly and trustfully with each other. But, thanks to the dominant digital platforms and the ways they distort human behavior, we have lost that ability—while, at the same time, we’ve been robbed of the data that is rightfully ours.

The roots of this crisis, argue Frank McCourt and Michael Casey, lie in the prevailing order of the internet. In plain but forceful language, the authors—a civic entrepreneur and an acclaimed journalist—show how a centralized system controlled by a small group of for-profit entities has set this catastrophe in motion and eroded our personhood.
And then they describe a groundbreaking solution to reclaim it: rather than superficial, patchwork regulations, we must reimagine the very architecture of the internet. The resulting “third-generation internet” would replace the status quo with a new model marked by digital property rights, autonomy, and ownership.

Inspired by historical calls to action like Thomas Paine’s Common Sense, Our Biggest Fight argues that we must act now to embed the core values of a free, democratic society in the internet of tomorrow. Do it right and we will finally, properly, unlock its immense potential.

About the Author

Frank H. McCourt, Jr. is the executive chairman of McCourt Global, a private family enterprise working across the real estate, sports, technology, media, and capital investment industries. He is the founder and executive chairman of Project Liberty, a broad-based effort to build a better web for a better world. The project includes the development of an open internet protocol (the Decentralized Social Networking Protocol), which shifts data rights from platforms to people, and an institute—launched with founding partners Georgetown University, Stanford University, and Sciences Po—to advance research and develop a governance framework for the internet’s next era.

Michael J. Casey is Chief Content Officer at the award-winning media company CoinDesk, host of the “Money Reimagined” podcast, and the Chairman of the Consensus conference. He has worked as a journalist on five continents, including eighteen years with Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal, and was a founding staffer at MIT's Digital Currency Initiative. Casey’s previous books include The Age of CryptocurrencyThe Social Organism, and The Truth Machine.

Praise For…

“In the spirit of Thomas Paine’s Revolution-era Common Sense, this manifesto challenges us to create new digital architectures to safeguard democracy. Frank McCourt and Michael Casey’s Our Biggest Fight is an important book as we enter the era when artificial intelligence meets social media.”Walter Isaacson

“The Internet has reshaped our economies, societies, and personalities—and AI is about to do it again. And so it’s a perfect moment for Our Biggest Fight, McCourt and Casey’s impassioned manifesto about how to build a human-centered digital future. Everyone who cares about the changes and the challenges that lie ahead should read this book.”—Nicholas Thompson, CEO, The Atlantic

“By illuminating the perverse incentives in Big Tech’s business models, Frank McCourt demonstrates just how unacceptable our current predicament is. Our Biggest Fight is a powerful call to arms to demand something different—for our society, and for ourselves.”—Tristan Harris, cofounder of the Center for Humane Technology

“Something is deeply broken in our society, and it is getting worse fast. In this short and beautifully written book, Frank McCourt and Michael Casey show us how the internet, which once held out the promise of a better world, has been captured and corrupted by companies that take our data, ignore our rights, and harm our children. The authors then lay out what a better internet architecture would do, and they show us that it is already taking shape. This is an inspiring and hopeful book—a roadmap to ‘a digital future with humans at the center.’”—Jonathan Haidt, NYU-Stern School of Business professor, author of The Righteous Mind, and co-author of The Coddling of the American Mind

“Everyone understands the pathologies of our current internet and social media worlds. But you can’t leave something behind unless you have a new place to go. McCourt shows us how to reach this new and better digital future.”—Rob Reich, McGregor-Girand Professor of Social Ethics of Science and Technology, Stanford University

Our Biggest Fight takes a hard look at today’s internet and social media platforms, how they are impacting our children, communities, society and democracy and demands we address these issues head on. McCourt and Casey inject much-needed hope into the urgent conversation about how we might reshape technology to prioritize people over profits.”—Dan Porterfield, president and CEO of The Aspen Institute

“Striking the perfect balance of honesty and hope, Frank McCourt and Michael Casey send a clear and compelling message: today’s internet is fundamentally broken, but together, we can build a better web.”—Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation

“No one has done as much as Frank McCourt to invest in the development of a more humane and plural digital world. Finally, we have his full vision for rewriting the constitution of the internet.”Glen Weyl, economist and author

Product Details
ISBN: 9780593728512
ISBN-10: 0593728513
Publisher: Crown
Publication Date: March 12th, 2024
Pages: 224
Language: English