Celebrating one year of the Creative Good community
By Mark Hurst • May 26, 2022

I’m happy to announce that the Creative Good community has made it past our first-year milestone. The launch announcement, last May, described the goal:

This is one of the biggest announcements of my career: I’m inviting you to join Creative Good, a new community to make tech better.

Creative Good is, now, more than a weekly newsletter. It’s a community of people who believe tech can create better outcomes in the world, in contrast to the harms caused by Big Tech. We’ll journey together to gain awareness about what’s happening, call out what’s going wrong, and spotlight what’s good and deserves more attention.

Twelve months later later, I’m happy to report that we’re still here. And we’ve had a great year. With free, public-access posts and paywalled, members-only posts, we have explored just about every dominant topic and story in tech over the past year. (See the entire list.)

I want to emphasize that this work is fully funded by Creative Good members. Thanks to everyone who joined in the past year. And I hope you’ll consider joining the community, too. In fact I’d put it a little more urgently, as I really do need more people to become members. Researching and writing is an enormous amount of work – which I enjoy! – but it does require support from readers.

Please help me celebrate the first year of the Creative Good community, and keep the project going for a second year. It just takes two clicks and thirty seconds: Please join Creative Good.

Public posts

Here’s a selection of the free posts over the past year:

• Surveillance: Is your phone listening to you? (May 27, 2021) and Voice surveillance must die (September 30, 2021)

• VR and AR: Smiling in the metaverse (October 22, 2021) and My predictions for Apple’s smart glasses (Dec 3, 2021)

• Big Tech criminality: Are Facebook and Google criminal enterprises? (Dec 17, 2021), and Concentration of power is the problem (Feb 3, 2022), and Designing for deceit in Silicon Valley (March 18, 2022)

• China and Xinjiang: Why you should pay attention to ‘Made in China’ (June 11, 2021), and Beijing is giving orders to Big Tech (June 17, 2021), and We said ‘never again.’ Now look at Xinjiang (Jan 21, 2022), and Human rights and digital spycraft (April 1, 2022)

• Elon Musk: Paying respect to our new techno-king (May 13, 2021)

• A story I broke about Apple’s plagiarized ad campaign, copying the Washington Post: Apple’s new iPhone commercial is a rip-off (June 3, 2021)

• Praising libraries: Public libraries are better than Google (August 27, 2021)

• Dumping Amazon: Why you should resist Amazon by cancelling your Prime account (Feb 18, 2022)

• Analyzing Bandcamp: Bandcamp risks becoming an Epic failure (Mar 3, 2022)

• Offering a new path: Walking away from tech (May 6, 2022), sharing wisdom from Paul Salopek’s worldwide journey.

Premium topics

Behind the paywall, on the members-only Creative Good Forum, we’ve been discussing all of the above, plus the topics listed below:

• 🔒 Cryptocurrency: My simple, brief explanation of Bitcoin (June 23, 2021), and 🔒 Web3 is a mistake but it may get built anyway (Dec 17, 2021), and 🔒 Responding to crypto hype (March 29, 2022), and 🔒 A cryptocurrency explainer (May 19, 2022)

• 🔒 Interface design: Bad cockpit design? Don’t blame the pilot (July 12, 2021): a look at poorly designed cockpits from Boeing to Tesla.

• 🔒 Spyware: On Pegasus spyware and Jon Fasman’s interview on We See it All (July 20, 2021)

• 🔒 Linguistics and tech: Verbal tics from Silicon Valley are spreading (September 22, 2021)

• 🔒 Indigenous thinking: Indigenous thinking and the future of civilization (Nov 19, 2021)

• 🔒 Neural implants: What happened to the monkeys with Elon Musk’s brain implant (Feb 11, 2022)

• 🔒 Deepfakes: Past the valley: Deepfakes are achieving lifelike status (Feb 21, 2022)

• 🔒 Fast fashion: The fashion industry is captured by Silicon Valley – and China (June 30, 2021)

• 🔒 The religion of Silicon Valley (May 13, 2022): On Carolyn Chen’s book “Work Pray Code”

• 🔒 Fun Stuff: Over 100 entries of fun items, posted throughout the year.

Good Reports

The support of Creative Good members also makes possible my work on Good Reports, my guide to the many alternatives to Big Tech platforms and tools. I recently updated a bunch of entries: Best VPN, Best search engine, Best visual search engine, Best messaging apps, Best online game services, Best music platform, Best social network, a list of online stores that aren’t Amazon, and the best places to buy books.

All of the above are free and fully available to the public – supported by Creative Good members.

In addition, I published two “premium analysis” pieces for Creative Good members only:

• 🔒 Audacity and audio editors

• 🔒 LED bulbs: challenges and purchase guide

I’d like to continue Good Reports as a free and open resource, with the occasional members-only premium analysis. But this will require more people to step up and chip in to support my efforts. Please join Creative Good to help me continue to maintain Good Reports.

We need a community to raise awareness about tech, push back on the harms, and spotlight genuinely good products and teams. Creative Good is that community. I can bring us through our second year, but the project needs more support. So I’ll ask one more time: please join Creative Good.

Until next time,


Mark Hurst, founder, Creative Good – see official announcement and join as a member
Email: mark@creativegood.com
Read my non-toxic tech reviews at Good Reports
Listen to my podcast/radio show: techtonic.fm
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Sign up for my to-do list with privacy built in, Good Todo
Twitter: @markhurst

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