2018 | HD Color | 23:30
Through the prism of big data, psychometrics, micro-targeted surveillance and advanced techniques of persuasion, nix contemplates Donald Trump’s 2016 U.S. Presidential election victory and our dystopian present and “big-brotherish” future.
The film’s central voice is that of Alexander Nix, the CEO of Cambridge Analytica, a data mining and “strategic communications” firm notorious for its role in Trump’s Electoral College victory. A range of images related to surveillance systems, from eye tracking to facial recognition, are juxtaposed with the observations of Mr. Nix, a blithe 21st century salesman and confidence man. Interspersed throughout the film are additional comments from others, including, in order:
Steve Bannon, a former board member of Cambridge Analytica and the former White House chief strategist for the Trump Administration as well as former executive chair of Breitbart News;
Tristan Harris, the former Design Ethicist at Google, now leading Time Well Spent, a non-profit movement dedicated to aligning technology with our humanity;
Ginni Rometty, Chairman, President and CEO of IBM, who has helped lead the company in its cloud platform and “cognitive solutions” endeavors.
Julian Assange, the Australian computer programmer who founded Wikileaks in 2006 and whose strategic leaks of Russian-hacked Democratic Party emails impacted the 2016 election results;
Jaron Lanier, the computer scientist and pioneer in the field of virtual reality who is known for charting a humanistic approach to technology.