Sunday, April 28

Barcelona, Spain

April documentary: The Great Hack

This month, we'll be watching and discussing this 2019 documentary on the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica election meddling scandal. As we approach another pivotal election with the social media landscape even more convoluted than it was then, it's useful to look at how our data can be used in undemocratic ways. A review on describes it this way:

Their narrator is David Carroll, a media professor whose international lawsuit serves as the jumping off point.  “The Great Hack” blends in details about how the many strides in computer technology and data analysis now allow a massive, global expansion of a new type of social experiment, one that involves reshaping the world in a particular image. Here, social media becomes the new Petri dish, enticing users with hot trends and ideas that demanded immediate consumption and acceptance lest the user risk being left behind. Facebook and Twitter have so easily exploited this notion in the culture that the term “fear of missing out” was coined to describe it. It was only a matter of time before someone applied this to politics and elections.

“The Great Hack” concerns itself with the United States Presidential election of 2016 and, to a lesser extent, the Brexit vote and other international political campaigns. The common factor in all these events is a now-defunct firm called Cambridge Analytica, represented throughout the film by several former employees. At the height of its powers, the company held up to 5,000 data points about each of the people contained in its databases. This information was used for a variety of purposes meant to manipulate a certain cross-section of people. The master manipulators didn’t go after people whose minds had been made up; they went after on-the-fence folks referred to as “the persuadables.” Using the collected data, Cambridge Analytica set out to create fear and/or apathy to achieve the results of the political parties that hired them. Carroll’s lawsuit is an attempt to retrieve the data collected on him.

It should be noted that this gets up close and personal with one of the key members of the CA team who went from working for the Obama campaign to helping the Trump election campaign.

This is the fifth event in our political film series. Previous documentaries included The JanesAll the Beauty and the Bloodshed, I Am Not Your Negro, and Pelosi in the House.

The event is being held at a member's home. All are welcome. Popcorn will be served. Please bring a bottle of whatever you want to drink. 

Doors open at 5:00 pm Sunday afternoon and the film will start promptly at 5:30, followed by discussion.

Suggested donation 10 euros via the website with your RSVP. We will use your donation to fund phonebanking, voter registration, and other GOTV efforts in Spain and Barcelona.

Running time: 1 hour 54 minutes


Sunday, April 28, 2024 at 05:00 PM Madrid Time


Member's home in the Eixample
Rambla Catalunya-Valencia (exact address to be provided upon RSVP)
Barcelona 08007
Google map and directions


Catherine Ellen Dexter

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