DataDownload: No one is ready for the CCPA and AI can’t replace Emotive Journalism

NYC Media Lab
6 min readJan 4, 2020

DataDownload: No one is ready for the CCPA and AI can’t replace Emotive Journalism A weekly summary of all things Media, Data, Emerging Tech View this email in your browser

Ok, say it very slowly. Twenty…Twenty. Sounds kinda weird doesn’t it. Well, I’m all in. 2020 is going to be big, frothy, important, and intense. Like the best rollercoaster you’ve ever ridden, if you’re into such things.

Today, a look at the future of Voice AI — well worth reading. We take two mighty swipes at phones, their impact and maybe even their demise. The California Consumer Privacy Act is going to land and make a big noise.

And, because we just had a decade, a look at how YouTube changed TV. Because video remains a complicated, frothy, mess. Yup.

So, welcome to the future, you arrived at the right time. Lots to do, and the NYC Media Lab is poised to help connect some powerful dots.

Have an idea how we can help you in 2020? Reach out —, happy to chat.


Steven Rosenbaum
Managing Director
The NYC Media Lab Must-Read Voice AI 2020 Predictions From 46 Voice Industry Pros

Voice tech news site Voicebot spoke to over 40 industry professionals — like SoundHound GM Katie McMahon and Discovery director of technology for emerging platforms Tim McElreath — to get an idea of what to expect in 2020. McElreath’s prediction is pretty interesting — but definitely skim them all!

“This year there is going to be a blurring of boundaries between third-party development, content presented in first-party platform templates, cross-linking between smaller related features, and a move toward shared (but extensible) domain language models.”

23 min read

Read More No More Phones and Other Tech Predictions for the Next Decade Can we expect better from the tech industry now that “outsize expectations for tech have been leveled and fanboy tendencies toward technology companies have been tamped down”? NY Times writer Kara Swisher believes we can.

Swisher sees climate change tech investment, automation for good, openings for better social platforms, diversity, and gadgets that allow us to put down the phone (and stop “sharenting”) as runways to a slightly better tech tomorrow… “I am calling it now: There will be an internet in the future that stops screaming at us.”

7 min read Read More For the Media AI Can’t Conjure Up an Errol Morris

Every year, Nieman Lab asks journalism professionals what they think will happen in the upcoming 12 months, compiling them into a collection of pithy predictions. London-based media researcher and a former fellow at Harvard’s Shorenstein Center Hossein Derakhshan believes there’s one aspect of journalism AI can’t touch: for all the automated newsgathering, facilitated content creation, and uncanny personalization, “emotions and affect are [still] outside of the domain of reason.”

“AI is set out to kill most of the remaining newsroom jobs. But it can never replace how Errol Morris, Bob Woodward, or Michael Barbaro construct long-form affective narratives — which is the future of journalism.”

3 min read

Read More No One Is Ready for California’s New Consumer Privacy Law “If you thought the GDPR was bumpy, the CCPA is going to be a real roller coaster.” — Reece Hirsch, Morgan Lewis’ privacy and cybersecurity practice

Here’s the gist of the CCPA: “if your company buys or sells data on at least 50,000 California residents each year, you have to disclose to those residents what you’re doing with the data, and, they can request you not sell it [and even delete it].”

But that’s where the simplicity ends. CCPA’s regulations are opaque and broad, and it will be years until a clear interpretation surfaces. Some companies, like Microsoft, are trying to become CCPA-friendly early on, even outside of California. Others, like Facebook, insist they are already compliant.

4 min read Read More The Decade That YouTube Changed TV

“It’s not so much that YouTube has gone mainstream as the mainstream has gone YouTube.”

YouTube has been an inescapable part of mainstream media ever since Jimmy Fallon’s History of Rap bit got twice as many views online as it did on air in 2010 — and even some years before when the platform penned deals with major studios to stream movies.

YouTubers have buoyed the platform over the past decade and themselves became major celebrities, working with the world’s largest brands and even getting primetime gigs on major television networks. Wired takes a look at how Google’s platform has affected our lives.

6 min read

Read More What We’re Watching Inside the Risky Venture of Spaceport America

Spaceport America claims to be the world’s first purpose-built commercial spaceport, and could host its first batch of “space tourists” in 2020 — for $250k a head. The Verge heads over to the sleepy town next door to document the potential effect of the massive venture on the small population.

13 min watch Watch Now Events & Announcements Event: EdTech and HigherEd — Considerations for Digital Accessibility
Date: January 7, 7PM-9PM
In this talk, Senior Front-end Developer and Accessibility Lead at the Center for Teaching and Learning at Columbia Zarina Mustapha shares some experiences, challenges, and solutions in integrating learning design frameworks into the making of accessible educational technologies. Register Here. A Deeper Look I Asked My Students to Turn in Their Cell Phones and Write About Living Without Them.

After his students floundered on a philosophy midterm, Humber College’s Ron Srigley proposed a unique extra credit assignment to get at the probable root of the poor performance: he asked students to hand in their phones for nine days (which are used pervasively in his class) and write about the experience.

The initial reactions were what we’d all expect: students “initially felt lost, disoriented, frustrated, and even frightened.” They had to (gasp!) walk up to strangers to ask the time, had no protection from awkward moments, and even had to engage in real conversations. Despite these horrors, students reported sleeping better, feeling less harassed by floods of texts, and increased their productivity and overall engagement with the world.

11 min read

Read More 2019 in Review: 10 Open-Sourced AI Datasets For a different approach to a 2019-in-review piece, why not overview ten major datasets that were open-sourced over the last year? Synced Review lists notable submissions like Facebook AI’s deepfake dataset, Google’s Natural Questions dataset, and MIT’s ObjectNet.

5 min read Read More Transactions & Announcements AI Media Company Ryff Raises $5M


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NYC Media Lab

NYC Media Lab connects university researchers and NYC’s media tech companies to create a new community of digital media & tech innovators in New York City.