•  55
    Novices face a problem when it comes to forming true beliefs about controversial issues that they cannot assess themselves: Who are the trustworthy experts? Elizabeth Anderson offers a set of criteria intended to allow novices to form reliable assessments of expert trustworthiness. All they need to assess experts is a high-school education and access to the internet. In this paper, I argue that novices face a much harder time using her criteria effectively than we would expect or hope. This prob…Read more
  •  38
    Myth presents us with two major problems: definition and usage. In this paper I focus on the latter problem and argue in defense of Spinoza’s theory of political myth as opposed to the dichotomy of “myth as progress” and “myth as regression.” Spinoza’s theory is preferable because it allows for a full-bodied understanding of myth, its legitimate uses and its dangers for slipping into superstition. Because myth plays on the imagination, the basest form of knowledge available to all people and …Read more
  •  34
    J. M. Bernstein argues that to capture the depths of the harm of torture, we need to do away with the idea that we possess intrinsic and inviolable worth. If personhood is inviolable, then torture can inflict only apparent harm on our standing as persons. Bernstein claims that torture is a paradigm of moral injury because it causes what he calls “devastation”: The victim experiences an actual degradation of his or her personhood. Bernstein argues that our value is given to us through mutual reco…Read more
  •  17
    Recognition trust
    Philosophical Studies 1-20. forthcoming.
    Trust is critical for social life, and yet it is alarmingly fragile. It is easily damaged and difficult to repair. Philosophers studying trust have often noted that basic kind of trust needs to be in place in order for social life to be possible. Although philosophers have suggested that basic trust must exist, they have not tried to describe in explicit terms what this basic trust looks like, or how it comes to be. In this article I will identify and describe a basic form of trust that I call r…Read more
  •  14
    Trust as a Test for Unethical Persuasive Design
    Philosophy and Technology 1-17. forthcoming.
    Persuasive design draws on our basic psychological makeup to build products that make our engagement with them habitual. It uses variable rewards, creates Fear of Missing Out, and leverages social approval to incrementally increase and maintain user engagement. Social media and networking platforms, video games, and slot machines are all examples of persuasive technologies. Recent attention has focused on the dangers of PD: It can deceptively prod users into forming habits that help the company’…Read more