The Conversation published my listacle “Nine reasons you should care about NSA’s PRISM surveillance”, in which I look at the arguments against the pervasive and pernicious myth that we have “nothing to hide.” “Nothing to hide” is an absolutist gloss that puts the focus on the individual rather than on the real problem of a society-wide loss of data control at many levels. While I am certainly not the first to have explored the topic, and what I have written is done standing on the shoulders of giants such as Bruce Schneir, my nine reasons for why we must care, regardless of our innocent intentions, are detailed in the article:
Presumption of guilt
The loss of personal data control
Transferring power to security organisations
Changing definitions of issues of concern
Personal abuse of power
Big data and the problem of patterns
And, as was pointed out on Twtter, there are certainly more reasons:
One of the highlights of GSummit 2013 in San Francisco was the cityHUNT scavenger hunt on April 16. Teams were given a couple of pages of instructions, cameras, and two hours to run all over SF finding things, convincing strangers to help, and generally causing genial mayhem. Our team Satha Kotiya (Scavenging Tiger [Sri Lankan]) blitzed the event, earning 980 points, with awesome teamwork.
Team Satha Kotiya (Scavenging Tiger in Sri Lankan)
The Conversation published my article on slacktivism versus snarktivism, in which I illustrate some of the ways people resist so-called slacktivist or clicktivist campaigns that rely on ‘simply’ sharing or liking images.
Source: Uploaded to Know Your Meme by amanda b.
Debate over the value of online activism has risen again in the wake of the highly visible Human Rights Campaign marriage equality campaign, which urged Facebook users to replace their profile photographs with a red equal sign.
The very evolutionary forces that allow memes to propagate in support of a campaign–even a so-called slacktivist campaign–also afford resistance. Following Rod Cottingham’s cartoon title, I call this resistance “snarktivism”.
There are always dissenting opinions, and this is just a new way of presenting those opinions. The meme forms known as image macros are central to snarktivism as they provide templates for critique.
I was interviewed by Clive Roberson about online anonymity, trolling, and media ethics. I said that while online trolls do seem to get away with behaviour that would be cause for legal action if undertaken by an identified media professional or organisation, Electronic Frontiers Australia would argue that exhaustive and over-reaching legislation such as that proposed by the National Security Inquiry is not the answer because it would infringe our civil liberties.
Robertson, C. (2013, April 1). Segment on online anonymity. 2UE.