Escaping the Internet with Toby Shapshak

South African tech journalist Toby Shapshak deleted the Facebook app from his phone. „We’ll look back a hundred of years and be horrified of how quickly we gave up our privacy.“

Toby, who has interviewed both Nelson Mandela and Steve Jobs, still believes that technology can be a source for good. But he says it’s up to us to decide how we will use it. We met Toby at the LOGIN conference in Vilnius to discuss how to escape social media addiction, end online harassment and why he didn’t upload a single photo of his newborn son online.

Lithuania is a special place for Toby. His grandparents were Lithuanian Jews who fled to South Africa during the war. He sees parallels between repressive Soviet and Apartheid ideologies. ©Mindaugas Drigotas

„Cyberbullying is a huge problem. In school I’ve experienced terrible anti-semitism. But when I look at anti-semitism online, the scale of it is horrendous“, says Toby. ©Mindaugas Drigotas

GQ magazine called Toby “the most high-profile technology journalist in South Africa”. He interviewed Nelson Mandela, Dalai Lama, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak. His thinking about technology is deeply attached to his humanist values. ©Mindaugas Drigotas

„Technology is neutral. It just enables us to do something. It’s the human nature that we need to work with“, says Toby. ©Mindaugas Drigotas

Further reading:

You don’t need an app for that. Toby Shapshak’s TED Talk on innovation in Africa.

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The studio voice over recorded at Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania.

We want to thank LOGIN conference for the opportunity to meet Toby Shapshak in Vilnius.

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