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Everyday  Surveillance:  Personal  
data  and  social  classifica5ons
by	
  David	
  Lyon	
  
	
  
	
  
Yavuz	
  Paksoy	
  
Introduc5on
By	
  myriad	
  forms	
  of	
  agencies,	
  commercial	
  and	
  government	
  
organiza9ons,	
  people’s	
  e...
Introduc5on
Surveillance	
  does	
  also	
  raise	
  ques9ons	
  about	
  power,	
  ci9zenship	
  and	
  
technological	
 ...
Surveillance  Became  So  Central
For	
  most	
  of	
  human	
  history,	
  most	
  social	
  interac9on	
  has	
  been	
 ...
Surveillance  Became  So  Central
It	
  is	
  striking,	
  for	
  example,	
  that	
  neither	
  the	
  telephone	
  nor	
...
Surveillance  Became  So  Central
Documentary	
  evidence	
  were	
  required	
  for	
  administra9ve	
  and	
  
commercia...
The  view  of  the  other  way
Personal	
  data	
  may	
  be	
  released	
  –	
  wiMngly	
  or	
  unwiMngly	
  –	
  by	
  ...
Paradox
Privacy	
  produces	
  surveillance	
  that,	
  it	
  is	
  said,	
  threatens	
  privacy.	
  
As	
  the	
  more	
...
The  view  of  the  other  way
But	
  not	
  only	
  privacy.	
  As	
  surveillance	
  became	
  a	
  central,	
  cons9tu9...
The  view  of  the  other  way
Informa9on	
  infrastructures	
  allow	
  for	
  plug-­‐ins	
  from	
  other	
  sorts	
  of...
The  view  of  the  other  way
Given	
  the	
  immense	
  value	
  placed	
  on	
  personal	
  data,	
  both	
  for	
  com...
The  view  of  the  other  way
In	
  2000	
  a	
  defunct	
  company	
  called	
  ToySmart.com	
  tried	
  to	
  sell	
  i...
Surveillance  Society
Dominant	
  groups	
  determine	
  how	
  and	
  in	
  what	
  interests	
  the	
  material	
  
infr...
Surveillance  Society
Only	
  personal	
  fears	
  about	
  privacy	
  distracts	
  us	
  from	
  the	
  public	
  issues	...
Surveillance  Society
Only	
  personal	
  fears	
  about	
  privacy	
  distracts	
  us	
  from	
  the	
  public	
  issues	...
Surveillance  Society
The	
  author	
  is	
  not	
  sugges9ng	
  that	
  classifica9on	
  and	
  surveillance	
  are	
  
so...
Mobilizing  Responses
ALempts	
  to	
  create	
  an	
  electronic	
  ‘Australia	
  Card’	
  for	
  all	
  ci9zens	
  in	
 ...
Mobilizing  Responses
The	
  law,	
  at	
  best,	
  can	
  only	
  help	
  to	
  create	
  a	
  culture	
  of	
  carefulne...
Discussion  Points
1.  How	
  could	
  it	
  be	
  possible	
  for	
  people	
  both	
  making	
  use	
  of	
  surveillanc...
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Everyday surveillance

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Transcript of "Everyday surveillance"

  1. 1. Everyday  Surveillance:  Personal   data  and  social  classifica5ons by  David  Lyon       Yavuz  Paksoy  
  2. 2. Introduc5on By  myriad  forms  of  agencies,  commercial  and  government   organiza9ons,  people’s  everyday  life  is  being  checked,  watched,   recorded  and  analyzed,  so  much  so  that  we  o?en  take  for  granted  the   fact  that  we  leave  trails  and  traces  wherever  we  are  and  whatever  we   do.   Surveillance  contributes  increasingly  to  the  reproduc9on  and   reinforcing  of  social  divisions.  
  3. 3. Introduc5on Surveillance  does  also  raise  ques9ons  about  power,  ci9zenship  and   technological  development,  and  about  informa9on  policy,  regula9on   and  resistance.   It  is  seen  here  as  a  response  to  the  ‘disappearing  body’  from   integra9ve  social  rela9onships,  enabled  by  modern  means  of   communica9on  and  informa9on-­‐handling.   The  rise  of  invisible  informa9on  infrastructures  that  facilitate  the   classifica9on  and  processing  of  personal  data  and  the  increasing   porousness  of  their  storage  containers  generate  dis9nc9ve  ques9ons   about  everyday  surveillance.  
  4. 4. Surveillance  Became  So  Central For  most  of  human  history,  most  social  interac9on  has  been  face-­‐to-­‐ face.   Today,  communica9on  that  do  not  involve  co-­‐presence  and  that  are   stretched  over  space.   It  is  a  key  feature  of  modernity  that  using  new  media  of   communica9on  people  can  interact  and  even  remain  in  rela9onships   that  are  integrated  with  others  despite  being  divided  by  distance.  
  5. 5. Surveillance  Became  So  Central It  is  striking,  for  example,  that  neither  the  telephone  nor  the  Internet   were  conceived  as  means  of  helping  ordinary  people  to  chat  with  each   other  but  that  is  just  how  they  have  come  to  be  used.   Author  suggests  that  as  new  technologies  enabled  more  and  more  to   be  done  at  a  distance,  some  compensa9ons  are  sought  for  the  fading   face,  the  disappearing  body.   In  earlier  9mes,  suitable  compensa9ons  included  a  signature  or  a  seal   on  a  leLer  to  authen9cate  its  personal  origin.  But  in  the  increasingly   complex  social  seMngs  of  modernity,  other  tokens  of  trust  were   sought.    
  6. 6. Surveillance  Became  So  Central Documentary  evidence  were  required  for  administra9ve  and   commercial  purposes:   iden9fica9on  at  school,  the  workplace  or  to  police   for  admission  to  certain  sites   to  obtain  cash  from  a  bank  or  to  pay  for  purchases   tokens  of  trust,  worthiness  and  authen9ca9on   Today  our  wallets  and  purses  are  stuffed  with  credit  cards,   membership  numbers,  phone  cards,  social  insurance  cards,  driver’s   licences,  library  cards,  health  cards  and  loyalty  club  cards  that  can   either  be  used  when  no  other  body  is  present  for  the  transac9on   The  body  has  disappeared  from  these  rela9ons  but  communica9on   con9nues  
  7. 7. The  view  of  the  other  way Personal  data  may  be  released  –  wiMngly  or  unwiMngly  –  by  those  to   whom  they  refer  and  communicated  to  others  (the  bank,  the  airline)   who  have  some  interest  in  them.   What  happens  to  those  data  as  they  are  processed  is  largely  unknown   by  data  subjects,  although  some  of  it  may  be  guessed  when  the  road-­‐ toll  invoice,  personalized  adver9sing  or  spam  (electronic  junk  mail)   appears  in  the  mailbox  or  on  the  screen.  
  8. 8. Paradox Privacy  produces  surveillance  that,  it  is  said,  threatens  privacy.   As  the  more  anonymous  arrangements  of  the  modern  ‘society  of   strangers’  emerged,  and  privacy  was  more  valued,  so  the  reciprocal   need  for  tokens  of  trust  grew  as  a  means  of  maintaining  the  integrity  of   rela9ons  between  those  strangers.   As  the  locally-­‐known,  embodied  person  slid  from  view  in  the  web  of   social  rela9ons,  so  the  importance  of  creden9als,  iden9fica9on  and   other  documentary  evidence  was  amplified.    
  9. 9. The  view  of  the  other  way But  not  only  privacy.  As  surveillance  became  a  central,  cons9tu9ve   component  of  modernity,  so  it  became  increasingly  a  social  ordering   device  on  a  greater  scale.   Surveillance  depends  on  informa9on  infrastructures,  invisible   frameworks  that  order  the  data  according  to  certain  criteria,  purposes   and  interests.   The  kinds  of  interests  behind  social  classifica9ons  expanded  to  include   not  only  government  departments  and  policing  or  security  services,  but   also  a  mul9tude  of  commercial  organiza9ons  as  well   To  take  just  one  example,  there  is  plenty  of  evidence  that  insurance   companies  contribute  strongly  to  police  work  in  Canada.  
  10. 10. The  view  of  the  other  way Informa9on  infrastructures  allow  for  plug-­‐ins  from  other  sorts  of   technological  devices   video  and  closed  circuit  television  (CCTV)   biometrics  and  gene9c  surveillance   Without  the  assistance  of  complex  and  sophis9cated  data  processing   power,  these  new  technologies  would  remain  rela9vely  weak  as  means   of  surveillance.   unques9oning  acceptance  of  informa9on  and  communica9on   technologies  is  far  higher  than  that  of  ethical  and  poli9cal  cri9que  and   assessment  
  11. 11. The  view  of  the  other  way Given  the  immense  value  placed  on  personal  data,  both  for  commercial   exploita9on  and  for  risk  management,  huge  pressure  is  placed  on  these   containers  to  yield  their  secrets  in  shareable  ways.   Government  departments  seek  ways  of  assis9ng  each  other  in   obtaining  compliance,  but  commercial  organiza9ons  also  exchange  and   trade  categorized  personal  data  in  an  effort  to  market  their  wares   more  effec9vely.   But  personal  data  on  airline  passengers  may  also  be  exchanged  for   security  purposes,  par9cularly  a?er  the  terrorist  aLacks  of  11     September  2001  
  12. 12. The  view  of  the  other  way In  2000  a  defunct  company  called  ToySmart.com  tried  to  sell  its   personal  data  they  were  challenged,  and  obliged  to  sell  only  the  en9re   website,  and  only  to  a  related  company.  
  13. 13. Surveillance  Society Dominant  groups  determine  how  and  in  what  interests  the  material   infrastructure  operates   ‘CCTV  has  been  implemented  not  as  one  pervasive  system  but  as  a   series  of  discrete,  localized  systems  run  by  a  myriad  of  different   organiza9ons  rather  than  a  single  state  monolith’   “It  is  augmented  not  only  within  hierarchical  organiza9ons  of  the  sort   that  depict  Big  Brother  overseeing  all  from  the  apex  or  the  panop9con   inspector  gazing  out  from  the  tower,  but  also,  more  frequently,  within   networks  that  spread  horizontally,  reaching  out  here,  contrac9ng   there,  but  always  finding  more  ways  of  seeking  and  processing   personal  data  with  a  view  to  management  and  influence”    
  14. 14. Surveillance  Society Only  personal  fears  about  privacy  distracts  us  from  the  public  issues   surrounding  surveillance   Through  social  conven9on  and  custom  people  accept  their  place  within   the  hierarchy  or  learn  to  see  themselves  in  rela9on  to  the  status  of   others.  
  15. 15. Surveillance  Society Only  personal  fears  about  privacy  distracts  us  from  the  public  issues   surrounding  surveillance   Through  social  conven9on  and  custom  people  accept  their  place  within   the  hierarchy  or  learn  to  see  themselves  in  rela9on  to  the  status  of   others.  
  16. 16. Surveillance  Society The  author  is  not  sugges9ng  that  classifica9on  and  surveillance  are   socially  nega9ve  processes.  They  are  necessary  aspects  of  all  social   situa9ons  and  serve  social  purposes,  from  the  vital  to  the  vicious.  The   point  is  that  as  powerful  means  of  governance,  of  social  ordering,  they   are  also  increasingly  invisible  and  easily  taken-­‐for  granted.   Ethical  inspec9on  is  required.   Internet  users  claim  to  care  about  online  privacy,  it  turns  out,   paradoxically,  that  the  very  same  persons  key-­‐in  PINs  and  credit  card   numbers  online!  
  17. 17. Mobilizing  Responses ALempts  to  create  an  electronic  ‘Australia  Card’  for  all  ci9zens  in  the   mid-­‐1980s  spawned  a  social  movement  that  successfully  turned  down   the  proposal,  as  did  similar,  later  aLempts  in  South  Korea.   The  use  of  the  Internet  to  mobilize  resistance  is  an  important  part  of   the  process.   Physical  barriers  and  constraint  within  places  maLer  less  today   Genuine  benefits  gleaned  from  having  surveillance  systems  in  place   tend  to  deflect  aLen9on  away  from  the  inequi9es  associated  with   many  discriminatory  dimensions  of  surveillance  
  18. 18. Mobilizing  Responses The  law,  at  best,  can  only  help  to  create  a  culture  of  carefulness  about   the  processing  of  personal  data,  it  cannot  possibly  speak  to  all  issues,   let  alone  keep  up  with  each  development  in  data  mining,  pro.  ling,   database  targe9ng  and  marke9ng,  loca9onal  tracking  of  vehicles  or   cellphones,  and  so  on.   Focused  ethical  aLen9on,  along  with  serious  proposals  for  democra9c   accountability,  and  educa9onal  and  awareness-­‐raising  ini9a9ves,  are   needed  if  everyday  surveillance  is  properly  to  be  understood,  and   when  necessary,  confronted  and  challenged.  
  19. 19. Discussion  Points 1.  How  could  it  be  possible  for  people  both  making  use  of  surveillance   systems  and  protect  their  privacy?  Is  it  possible?   2.  How  should  mobilizing  responses  be  formed  against  surveillance   power  of  (especially  commercial)  organiza9ons?  
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