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Alex Vindman on 'Here, Right Matters'

Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman is the Pritzker Military Fellow at the Lawfare Institute, a former NSC staffer, and of course, an impeachment witness in the first impeachment of Donald J. Trump. He is also the author of the new book, "Here, Right Matters: An American Story." He joined Benjamin Wittes to talk about the book and the ground it covers—from Vindman's immigration as a small child, to his departure from the Army, the decision he made to report what he heard Donald Trump say to President Zelensky of Ukraine and the fallout, positive and negative. 

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9/16/2021

The Broken Rube Goldberg Machine of Online Advertising

Today, we’re bringing you another episode of Arbiters of Truth, our series on the online information ecosystem.In a 2018 Senate hearing, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg responded to a question about how his company makes money with a line that quickly became famous: “Senator, we sell ads.” And indeed, when you open up your Facebook page—or most other pages on the internet—you’ll find advertisements of all sorts following you around. Sometimes they’re things you might really be interested in buying, even if you’ve never heard of them before—tailored to your interests with spooky accuracy. Other times, they’re redundant or just … weird. Like the aid for a pair of strange plaid pajamas with a onesie-style flap on the bottom that briefly took over the internet in December 2020.Shoshana Wodinsky, a staff reporter at Gizmodo, wrote a great piece explaining how exactly those onesie pajamas made their way to so many people’s screens. She’s one of very few reporters covering the business of online advertisements outside industry publications—so Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke to her this week about what it’s like reporting on ads. How exactly does ad technology work? Why is it that the ad ecosystem gets so little public attention, even as it undergirds the internet as we know it? And what’s the connection between online ads and content moderation?It’s the Lawfare Podcast, September 16: The Broken Rube Goldberg Machine of Online Advertising