Sean Parker on Future Tech Trends

Parker, the creator of Napster and a key player in the rise of Facebook, is, as usual, thinking big. He worries about a warring tech industry and envisions how social media can transform politics.

What's the Latest Development?

At the Techonomy conference in Tuscon, Arizona, this week, Parker spoke on a wide range of topics united by a common theme: Web technology. So ubiquitous and influential are modern communication media that Parker believes they have the power to solve major political problems, like the undue influence of money in our democracy. He also concedes social media abed some problems, such as terrorism, by allowing anonymous interaction across wide distances.

What's the Big Idea?

Parker is equally concerned about the future of the online tech industry. He fears that big alliances are becoming more common and more confused, a situation he compares to Europe pre-World War One: "It's hard to know who's at war with whom. You'll see Facebook align with Spotify. Google will pretend to be Switzerland and secretly do deals with everyone on the side, Microsoft will align more with Facebook, and Apple will stay on its own trying to build the Death Star."

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