Free is a Lie - RSA

Free is a Lie

Public talks


RSA House, London

  • Design
  • Digital
  • Social innovation
  • Technology

Designer and social entrepreneur Aral Balkan believes it is time to build an alternate future where we own our own tools, services, and data. And to do this we must create a new category of design-led, experience-driven ‘technology’.


Companies like Google and Facebook that dominate the Internet promise us free services in exchange for the right to watch and study us; to mine and farm us. Like quarries, like livestock, we are natural resources to be exploited in a brave new digital world of corporate surveillance that threatens our most fundamental freedoms.

There are open alternatives but they are too difficult for most of us to use.

It is time to bring design thinking to open source and build beautiful, seamless open consumer products that are easy to use and which respect our fundamental freedoms.

Join Aral Balkan at the RSA for this exclusive talk as part of a year of events to celebrate 90th Anniversary of the Student Design Awards.

Supported by the generosity of the Tindale Legacy.

Find out more about the RSA Student Design Awards.

Speaker: Aral Balkan, experience designer, programmer, social entrepreneur, and founder of Indie Phone

Chair: Nat Hunter, former Director of Design, RSA

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