This talk will explore how Silicon Valley companies have become the new kingmakers.
Twitter launched its verification program, a symbol of fame and recognition initially handed out to major celebrities—actors, pro athletes, journalists, and the like. Facebook and YouTube soon followed, and in doing so, created an ecosystem whereby American corporations decide who's "in" and who isn't, who matters and who doesn't.
Today, verification comes with certain privileges—better features and a lower likelihood of being censored, for starters—but it is the creation of celebrity, the elevation of some at the expense of others by corporate actors that should concern us.
This talk will explore the new kingmakers and the impact of their creation of celebrity on society.