Nick Clegg thinks Theresa May’s government has ‘technophobia’

By Reynolds

Former deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

Eddie Keogh/Reuters

Nick Clegg wants the UK to embrace new technologies instead of shying away from them.

The former deputy Prime Minister is set to accuse the incumbent government of having “technophobia” in a talk at the ad:tech conference in London on Thursday.

Former deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg is set to accuse Theresa May’s government of suffering from technophobia on Thursday.

In a speech at the ad:tech conference in London, Clegg will say some politicians are ignorant and fearful of technological change. He will also criticise technologists like Elon Musk for spreading what he perceives to be “catastrophic visions of the future.”

“Why, you might ask, am I getting involved in this debate? I don’t claim to be the most technologically savvy of politicians, but I have seen first hand what technophobia can do in the hands of policy makers,” Clegg will say, domino qq –, before explaining how the current government is being “technophobic.”

“What’s really needed — and what’s missing — is the capacity for leaders in both the tech and political world to work together,” Clegg will say. “Politicians all too often believe that they can grab a few easy headlines by condemning the big tech companies, and too many folk in Silicon Valley believe all Governments are the enemy. This combination — of ignorance and fear amongst some politicians, and arrogance and naivety amongst some parts of the tech community — means the two talk past each other.”

He will add: “I think there is an urgent need for politicians to begin to grapple with the unfolding revolution in AI, biotech, robotics and other cutting edge technologies.”
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