Whether it's Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, or Google; internet platforms are a huge force in our daily lives. The recent scandal over the Steven Bannon-affiliated Cambridge Analytica is the most recent example of the downside of data.
This episode of "How Do We Fix It?" is about google search, and how it can condemn former inmates to a life sentence without work. In their case, the internet is a "help not wanted" sign, preventing them from getting a job and putting their lives back on track. The cost to ex-prisoners and their families is enormous.
Three-out-of-four ex-offenders are unemployed at least a year after they finish their jail sentence. Less than half are working five years after their release. At a time of almost-full employment, this is a drag on the economy.
"When people get out of jail, their internet profiles can stay with them forever," says business executive, Brian Hamilton, founder of "Inmates to Entrepreneurs," an outreach group that helps ex-offenders start their own businesses. "There is systematic discrimination against these people by employers who always Google people."
We discuss the social and economic cost and consider whether people should have the right to have their past removed from their search profile, say after ten years. We hear from Brian how learning entrepreneurial skills can help large numbers of former inmates get a foothold in the jobs market.