Would we miss the Media Lab if it were gone?

A friend and MIT grad wrote to me yesterday, “I don’t know if the Media Lab is redeemable at all.” This in the wake of the bombshell Ronan Farrow piece in the New Yorker, reporting that the Media Lab under its director Joi Ito had covered up a much closer relationship with Jeffrey Epstein than previously revealed. Ito promptly resigned.
The Media Lab has always occupied a curious place in the tech world. According to itself, it “transcends known boundaries and disciplines by actively promoting a unique, antidisciplinary culture that emboldens unconventional mixing and matching of seemingly disparate research areas … In its earliest years, some saw the Media Lab as a house of misfits. Here, the emphasis was on building; the Lab’s motto was “demo or die.””
It ceased being viewed as a house of misfits a long time ago. Instead it has become perceived as a hyper-prestigious, creme-de-la-creme entity, a


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