January 31, 2020

Does choice exist when surveillance is used for mass manipulation?

kirsten Louise Baeyens, 32

Big data is the most valuable asset on the planet. More money was generated through the collection of data than any other resource in 2019. We, the public, provide that data for free, and we have almost no rights in claiming it back, or how it is used. Availability of sophisticated algorithms, mean companies, can locate and manipulate target audiences easily, and due to its effectiveness, they have embroiled in even darker pursuits. Targeted advertisements: using fake news and smear campaigns; inciting fear of immigrants, religious, or minority groups; or causing panic and public unrest can efficiently dissuade citizens from voting OR persuade vulnerable groups to vote differently. They unethically manufactured their favoured election results, with astounding accuracy and true Orwellian horror. This surveillance means we live in a free-for-all goldfish bowl of internet voyeurism, where everything is for sale. Like fish in a barrel we eat our crumbs of consumerism in ignorance of our fateā€¦. Are we really choosing Convenience over the human right of privacy? Are we choosing at all? If our choices/actions are already decided for us, by algorithms that know our deepest selves better than we do, how do we recognise who holds the puppet strings?

Welcome to the goldfish bowl, Mixed Media