Internet and Surveillance

Internet and surveillance: the challenges of Web 2.0 and social media by Christian Fuchs.

This book is an interesting insight into the variety of different aspects and relationships between the internet as a tool, it’s users and it’s uses in particular for monitoring society. I found it to be a good in-depth source on the topic as it feels well researched and well sourced, with a mixture of academic writing and intelligent and interesting analysis. The author takes us through the general ideas around changes in the way we use the internet all the way down to political implications of surveillance.

We have access to the first chapter of the book online, however the book seems to be worth referring to in it’s entirety as the author has a good understanding of the topic, furthermore the author is in their later adulthood which gives them a very interesting foundation for drawing comparison making their insight much more valuable, especially to those born admits the internet age.

For example, in the first chapter the author writes “Surveillance is new. Surveillance is the cardinal point of the internet.” He then recalls a time where secret police surveilled him when he participated in a prisoner’s conference, where the stalking and following of his actions was physical and detectable. He the makes the point that: “What is new now is surveillance that is hidden, unseen, and impossible to trace.” I found that to be a very effective use of personal experience to make a point.

The online version is available here with university login.  




1 Comment

  1. I remember a movie that I watched almost 10 years old now: Minority Report. Well basically the main character was an fbi something agent but whatever the point is that he disappeared and the police had to find him. I remember that they tracked like every camera in the ENTIRE US (banks, traffic lights, shops, etc) and they put his facial spots in a system in order to find him. Well that was disturbing!! All this only to say that we are constantly tracked and surveilled (not as much as Tom Cruise in Minority Report) even if we pretend we don’t know it.


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