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UFCE95-20-3: Information Systems in Society Lecture 8: Theorizing surveillance Reading: –Lyon, 2002, Everyday Surveillance: Personal data and social classifications.

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Presentation on theme: "UFCE95-20-3: Information Systems in Society Lecture 8: Theorizing surveillance Reading: –Lyon, 2002, Everyday Surveillance: Personal data and social classifications."— Presentation transcript:

1 UFCE : Information Systems in Society Lecture 8: Theorizing surveillance Reading: –Lyon, 2002, Everyday Surveillance: Personal data and social classifications

2 Surveillance theory Totalitarianism –1984, Brave New World –20th century fascist and communist states Panopticism –“all-seeing place” –Social discipline through utilitarian social contract –Evidence in growth of workplace and data surveillance The Surveillant Assemblage –Realized as inevitable by-product of ICT diffusion –“Rhizomic surveillance” - information trails and traces –Non-heirarchical and problematic for rulers and ruled –Evidence in ‘disappearing body’, growth of computer use and ‘function creep’.

3 Panopticon allows seeing without being seen. asymmetry of seeing-without- being-seen is the very essence of power because the power to dominate in the modern world rests on the differential possession of knowledge.

4 The modern panopticon: Shenzhen city Purpose built for the 2008 Olympics 12.4 million people 2 million CCTVs movements are tracked through national ID cards with scannable computer chips and photos that are instantly uploaded to police databases and linked to their holder's personal data of names, photos, residency information, work history and biometric data.

5 Panopticon in popular culture Big Brother Truman show The Sims Second Life

6 The 21st century panopticon What you’ve done –Archived data What you’re doing –Real-time data and media What you’ll do –Profiling

7 Surveillant Assemblage convergence and integration

8 Surveillant Assemblage Evidence for anything can be found in the networks Example: From: Jo Moore To: Alun Evans; Mortimer, Robin Date: 11/09/01 14:55:12 Subject: Media Handling Alun It’s now a very good day to get out anything we want to bury. Councillors expenses? Jo CC: Corry, Dan

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13 Surveillance and Control Positive effects: –improved efficiency and effectiveness –increased insight and overview over organisational processes (e.g. Work-flow systems) Negative effects: –“information panopticon” –Surveillance of human behaviour –resistance –Limits of freedom and autonomy –influence on the appropriation of IT –Unpredictable patterns of use can emerge Information systems make activities, events and objects, and - people- more visible

14 Data Surveillance the systematic use of personal data systems in the investigation or monitoring of the actions or communications of one or more persons. significantly less expensive than physical and electronic surveillance, because it can be automated. the economic constraints on surveillance are diminished, and more individuals, and larger populations, are therefore monitored. possibilities enhanced by digital convergence and integration

15 Data Surveillance Personal data surveillance Mass data surveillance –both may be used for its deterrent effects. –comprises a wide range of techniques: Front-End Verification. Computer Matching. Profiling

16 Template created for a particular class of person from past experience Data-holdings are then searched for digital personae with a close fit to that set of characteristics –used by government agencies to construct models of classes of person, eg., deviant or vunerable. –used by corporations to identify markets and consumers, but also staff-members and job-applicants relevant to vacant positions.

17 Function Creep Definition: –Function Creep occurs when a technology, a system, or personal data is lawfully and systematically expanded for unintended or unforeseen purposes. Often demonstrates Surveillant Assemblage

18 Function creep example: The UK national DNA Database 1.Originally focused on convictions for murder, burglary, sexual assault and GBH 2.All individuals charged, reported, cautioned or convicted of any recordable offence 3.DNA data to be stored indefinitely, regardless of acquittal or innocence 4.Short - medium term political goal of identifying all individual’s characteristics from DNA


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