SFU’s School of Communication is pleased to invite you to the 2022 Dallas Smythe Lecture, Platform regulation in Canada: Networked autonomy and networked sovereignty, featuring Canada Research Chair Sara Bannerman.
Communications law and policy, including platform regulation, is often taken as a neutral or technical arbiter serving justice and balancing the interests of conflicting groups. Are laws and policies neutral? Are laws and policies capable of “keeping up,” serving racial, gender and labour justice, and meeting the needs of people in the context of powerful internet companies, platforms and decision-making algorithms?
Governments and consumers, in some cases, have bought into the idea that algorithms are the new neutral arbiters, and platforms the new governors. Just as individual autonomy is now connected to technologies, the power of states, platforms and algorithms are tied together in a new set of powers, dependencies, and relations. These relations are fortified by the expansion of tech lobbying and datified election campaigns — including in Canada. In a world of complex interconnectedness, what do autonomy and sovereignty look like? While platforms have tremendous and growing power, battles over platform regulation are not preordained.
The Dallas Smythe Memorial Lecture has honoured critical scholars in the field of political economy of communications since 1993. Organized by SFU’s School of Communication, the lecture brings together faculty, students, and the broader community to honour the work and research of Dallas Smythe, who taught at SFU from 1976 until he passed away in 1992.
Presented in partnership with SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement and SFU Public Square.
- Research and Innovation
- Science and Technology
- Communication Studies & Media Arts