Rebecca Giblin and Cory Doctorow Meet the Author

16 Feb 2023

ANU/Canberra Times. Meet the Author. Rebecca Giblin and Cory Doctorow

6 -7 PM Thursday February 16. Manning Clark Hall Kambri Cultural Centre ANU

Rebecca Giblin and Cory Doctorow will be in conversation with Andrew Leigh on their new book, Chokepoint Capitalism, which documents how big tech and big content have captured creative labour markets and how we can win them back.

Giblin and Doctorow argue we’re in a new era of ‘chokepoint capitalism’, with exploitative businesses creating insurmountable barriers to competition that enable them to capture value that should rightfully go to others. All workers are weakened by this, but the problem is especially well illustrated by the plight of creative workers.

By analysing book publishing and news, live music and music streaming, screenwriting, radio, and more, Giblin and Doctorow deftly show how powerful corporations construct ‘anti-competitive flywheels’ designed to lock in users and suppliers, make their markets hostile to new entrants, and then force workers and suppliers to accept unfairly low prices.In the book’s second half, Giblin and Doctorow explain how to batter through those chokepoints, with tools ranging from transparency rights to collective action and ownership, radical interoperability, contract terminations, job guarantees, and minimum wages for creative work.

Chokepoint Capitalism is a call to workers of all sectors to unite to help smash these chokepoints and take back the power and profit that’s being heisted away – before it’s too late.

‘Chokepoint Capitalism tells us how the vampires crashed the party, and provides protective garlic.’ Margaret Atwood; ‘This book is an absolute must-read for anyone who senses that the predominant economic mythology is a lie, who wants to know what’s really happening in this economy – and who is ready to finally start fixing the problem.’ David Sirota; Giblin and Doctorow persuasively argue that copyright can’t unrig a rigged market – for that you need worker power, antitrust, and solidarity.’ Jimmy Wales, cofounder of Wikipedia.

Rebecca Giblin is an ARC Future Fellow and professor at Melbourne Law School, where she leads interdisciplinary teams researching issues around creators’ rights, access to knowledge, and the regulation of technology and culture. She is director of the Intellectual Property Research Institute of Australia.

Cory Doctorow, author of more than 20 books, is a bestselling science fiction writer and activist. He is a special adviser to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a visiting professor of computer science at the Open University (UK) and a MIT Media Lab research affiliate. He co-founded the UK Open Rights Group and co-owns the website Boing Boing.

Dr Andrew Leigh MP is the Federal Member for Fenner in the ACT and Assistant Minister for Competition, Charities and Treasury. Prior to being elected in 2010, Andrew was a professor of economics at the ANU.. Andrew is the author or co-author of eleven books, on topics including innovation, inequality, community, globalisation and existential risk.

The event will be introduced by Associate Professor Jenny Davis, the Deputy Director of ANU’s Humanising Machine Intelligence Program and the vote of thanks will be given by Professor Genevieve Bell, the vote of thanks will be given by Professor Genevieve Bell, inaugural Director of the School of Cybernetics at the ANU.

This event is in association with Harry Hartog Bookshop. Books will be available for purchase on the evening in the Cultural Centre foyer. Pre-event book signings will be available from 5.30pm, and available again after the event.  


• Registration is required for this event.

• Accessible parking spaces are available around campus should you require them.

• To help keep everyone safe, please ensure that you are familiar with, and follow, the advice from ACT Health regarding COVID-19.

• If you do not feel well, please refrain from attending this event.

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• A podcast will be made available after the event.

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