DiscoverBig TechBest of: Bishop Steven Croft on Keeping Humanity at the Centre of New Technology
Best of: Bishop Steven Croft on Keeping Humanity at the Centre of New Technology

Best of: Bishop Steven Croft on Keeping Humanity at the Centre of New Technology

Update: 2021-12-23
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In the early days of the internet, information technology could be viewed as morally neutral. It was simply a means of passing data from one point to another. But, as communications technology has advanced by using algorithms, tracking and identifiers to shape the flow of information, we are being presented with moral and ethical questions about how the internet is being used and even reshaping what it means to be human.

In this episode of Big Tech, Taylor Owen speaks with the Right Reverend Dr. Steven Croft, the Bishop of Oxford, Church of England. Bishop Steven, as he is known to his own podcast audience, is a board member of the Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation and has been part of other committees such as the House of Lords’ Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence.

Bishop Steven approaches the discussions around tech from a very different viewpoint, not as an academic or technologist but as a theologian in the Anglican church: “I think technology changes the way we relate to one another, and that relationship is at the heart of our humanity.” He compares what is happening now in society with the internet to the advent of the printing press in the fifteenth century, which democratized knowledge and changed the world in profound ways. The full impacts of this current technological shift in our society are yet to be known. But, he cautions, we must not lose sight of our core human principles when developing technology and ensure that we deploy it for “the common good of humankind.” “I don’t think morals and ethics can be manufactured out of nothing or rediscovered. And if we don’t have morality and ethics as the heart of the algorithms, when they’re being crafted, then the unfairness will be even greater than they otherwise have been.”

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Best of: Bishop Steven Croft on Keeping Humanity at the Centre of New Technology

Best of: Bishop Steven Croft on Keeping Humanity at the Centre of New Technology

Taylor Owen, Bishop Steven Croft