How culture drives foul play on the internet, and how new “upcode” can protect us

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  • Crypto speculation looks a lot like online sports betting, which looks like offline sports betting; cyber hacking resembles classic espionage; spear phishers recall flesh-and-blood con artists. The perpetrators of these crimes lure victims with well-worn appeals to faith and promises of financial reward

  • The best ways to protect ourselves from online tricks are social—public policies, legal and business incentives, and cultural shifts

  • Shapiro argues that upcode is responsible for all of technology’s impacts—positive and negative—and downcode is only its product

  • For any technologist or crypto enthusiast who believes computer code to be law and sees human error as an annoying hiccup, this idea may be disconcerting

  • hackers as a group to be “moral agents, possessing a sense of justice, purpose, and identity.

  • If an animal looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, the representativeness heuristic tells us it can swim

  • It was that sense of conviction that separated the losers from the winners,” he writes, even when the facts might have supported stepping back

  • The marketing pitch of communal faith and reward, the enticement to join a winning team, feeds a human social instinct—especially as more offline modes of connection are faltering

  • our settled moral and political convictions on what we owe one another

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