WeeklyTech #120

Roundup of Top Articles of 2021

As we begin this Advent season, I always find it helpful to look back over the previous year and think about the various ways that the Lord has blessed me and my family. This newsletter and the community we have formed through WeeklyTech is such an encouragement to me and I am grateful for the many who subscribe. It is truly an honor to have a small space in your inbox each Monday and I pray that the Lord uses what we do here to help you navigate the difficult theological, ethical, and philosophical questions we face each day in our digital society.

As I prepare for my annual top issues to watch out for post to start the year, I was reminded of these top resources from the website over the last 12 months.

3 ethical issues in technology to watch for in 2021

It is far too easy to take a myopic view of technology and the ethical issues surrounding its use in our lives. Technology is not a subset of issues that only technologists and policy makers should engage. These tools undergird nearly every area of our lives in the 21st century, and Christians, of all people, should contribute to the ongoing dialogue over these important issues because of our understanding of human dignity grounded in the imago Dei (Gen. 1:26-28). 

Should the government regulate social media?

Instead of defaulting to a government that must step in to solve all of our problems, we need to seek policy-oriented solutions and common good accommodations if we are to see true and lasting change in better policies that better reflect the diversity of thought on some of the most important issues of the day and champion free expression for all.

Why reading books you disagree with helps you grow

Reading books that you do not agree with or believe to be true can help sharpen your own ability to “make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you.” Not only will it push you to understand your own beliefs better, but it will also equip you to engage those around you in good conscience and faith.

How social media can impede our witness: The disconnect of the digital life

While we may think we are fighting the culture war or protecting the sheep through our digital engagement, we may actually be leading others and even ourselves astray by failing to remember that we are called to be above reproach in all places and through all mediums (Titus 1:6-8), and to model Christlikeness as members of the body of Christ.

Social media’s expert culture

Social media naturally breeds an expert culture, where we seek to prove our knowledge, allegiances, and abilities often before we consider the full impact of these decisions and how they will impact others created in God’s image.

Why privacy matters

A Christian moral theory of privacy must be grounded in the Christian understanding of human dignity as opposed to theories grounded in persistent pursuit of complete moral autonomy and individualistic freedom.

Make sure to subscribe to WeeklyTech to get the resources directly in your inbox each Monday morning. It truly is an honor to serve you all and I look forward to another year of WeeklyTech. If you ever have questions, topic you would like me to cover, or want to send feedback, make sure to email weeklytech@erlc.com.

The Rundown

Biden administration makes first move on data privacy – Margaret Harding McGill | Axios

An administration perspective on privacy policy could be key in developing a long-awaited national privacy law by putting the White House stamp on how to regulate privacy.

The art and science of Spotify Wrapped – Nat Rubio-Licht and Source Code team | Protocol

Spotify Wrapped is a year-in-review playlist and slideshow that serves up various data points from the past year of listening.

Defending against drones is becoming a business – Bryan Walsh | Axios

Drones provide cheap and easy ways to monitor land, deliver goods and simply explore. But as they proliferate, figuring out a method to prevent them from going where they shouldn’t will become increasingly important.

Forced to upgrade – Caleb Bailey | WORLD

Every year, a new iPhone comes out. And not just one version. Buyers can choose from a variety of sizes, camera quality, and storage options. But even with all its bells and whistles, the latest and greatest iPhone can’t stay new forever. It gets old. Eventually it stops working.

And that’s no accident. It’s actually part of the design—a concept called planned obsolescence.

Herman Bavinck (1854-1921): A Centenary Celebration – JBTS Online

In God’s kind providence, the church has always benefited from the labors of certain thinkers whose overall work encouraged, critiqued, and even preserved the church’s witness through various challenges and conflicts. Christians bear an inherent responsibility to investigate those voices from the past in order to render judgments upon their work within its context, and upon the commencement of such an investigation, Christians are charged with discerning which thinkers prove relevant for the church’s current opportunities and challenges.