Insight is a newsletter for people interested in thinking deeply about the world’s hardest, most complex and vital puzzles. It’s about the interaction between technology and society, the impacts of the transitions flowing through the globe but also about the pandemic that’s transforming the world.
Insight is a place for complicated, in-depth discussions that don’t constantly hedge and hem-and-haw defensively but also don’t undersell the uncertainty. Discussions that are practical in their orientation but honest in acknowledging ambiguity and unknowns about the world’s massive challenges. Discussions that treat the reader as a partner in thinking.
Insight is about the thinking we can do at the intersections between disciplines and methods, bringing together the science and the technology, people and society, recognizing the complexity and ambiguity of it all.
Zeynep Tufekci is a sociologist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a faculty associate at Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society. She’s the author of Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and Fragility of Networked Protest. Her writing currently appears in the New York Times and The Atlantic, where she is a contributing writer. In the past, she has been a columnist at Wired and Scientific American. Her writings have also appeared in a variety of outlets, ranging from the New Yorker to the Financial Times.
A profile of Tufekci in 2020 observed that, “long before she became perhaps the only good amateur epidemiologist, she had quietly made a habit of being right on the big things.” Another profile in 2016 said, “Like no other public intellectual, Tufekci has captured the moment, but she isn't an academic in an ivory tower.” The Chronicle of Higher education called her “one of the most prominent academic voices” on social media. The Washington Post’s book critic named Twitter and Tear Gas the “most enlightening book I read this year.”
Zeynep Tufekci in Sri Lanka doing field research on how the transition to the digital public sphere plays out. Summer 2019—before the times.