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poDcast Twenty Four

Richard Barbrook finds a path to the future and a new film questions the true cost of coffee. Listen now
21 June 2007


This week on openDemocracy's podcast: is the present always changing but the imaginary future always the same? Writer Richard Barbrook talks to Siobhan O'Connell about his latest book in which the past holds the key to a more creative use of information technology for the future; and the true cost of your cappucino - we review Black Gold, a new documentary which highlights the exploitation of coffee producers in Ethiopia. Hear it right now, or download and listen later on your computer or mp3 player.


The music you can hear in this poDcast is "Modern Jazz Samba" by Kevin Macleod (incompetech.com).

Image by Alex Veness.

Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals


To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

The NHS is a precious public institution. Any involvement from private companies should be open to public scrutiny and debate. We need more transparency during this pandemic – not less.


By adding my name to this campaign, I authorise openDemocracy and Foxglove to keep me updated about their important work.

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