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Newspaper publication by Jelle Brands (in Dutch)

Published on June 12, 2013 by
source: RD
 
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Newspaper research into violence in nightlife districts

Published on June 10, 2013 by

 

source: nos

 
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Call for participation in a design research project about the digital panopticon

Published on May 28, 2013 by

 
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The problem of (and with) wearable technology and privacy

Published on May 28, 2013 by

very interesting topic. Also, read the comments in the article! (a study in itself, I’d say). The problem of wearable technology is that, when it becomes hidden/ merges with in another archetype, such as a pair of glasses, it becomes intransparent. Where a handycam is recognizeable as a camera thus triggers a certain etiqutee surrounding it, Google glasses and similar things pose a new problem, especially with out notions of publicness and how to behave. (personally, I think the google galsses will be a flop because of the strong archetype that is a pair of glasses). Anyways, much to say about this, hovwere, I will save that for my thesis… Meanwhile, check the link (via nytimes)

 
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Docu about modern surveillance society

Published on May 28, 2013 by

 

Interesting documentary, found on boingboing. Since I am wirting my thesis, I do not have much time to comment (hence the linkdump), however, feel free to add/comment..

 
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polling after an incident changes acceptance of surveillance in the states

Published on May 1, 2013 by

A poll is debated in the NY times, showing that, especially after the Boston attacks, acceptance of surveillance by the state has grown.

On the topic of cameras; one sentence struk me:

“There are cameras in stores and supermarkets. Our families would be safer and surveillance cameras would provide evidence to help agencies pursue people, like they just did in Boston.”(taken from poll).

This begs the question why, despite all research done in Surveillance Studies, people are still making connections between CCTV and prevention. Not knowing the entire poll, here I would ask the utterer of this qoute how exactly cameras in stores and supermarkets make these places safer? I would argue that what happened in boston reveals the opposite; that despite the presence of CCTV, attacks took place anyway. Hence, for offendors, a CCTV camera is apparently not a valid or convincing reason to NOT commit a crime.

In any case, it’s an inetesting poll, becasue is shows how slowlsy but gradually a ‘control’ state is shaping (be this deliberately or not) and how individual rights and privacy are sacrificed for ‘the greater good’ of fighting ‘terrorism’. (anyone remember the highschool shootings in the States last year? Strangely that was not labelled as terrrorism…)

read article here: NYtimes

 
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Apps for safety?

Published on April 25, 2013 by
During Queensday (soon Kingsday) in the Netherlands, an app is made available to let people see the flows of the crowd during this (probably) overcrowded day. Where this sounds as a good idea. it does only work via the “critical -mass’ idea; the more people use it, the better it will work. This, though does imply participation of users and cellphones, who have to tune into this app. Besides the practical problem of battery life if constantly having your GPS on (will the municipality of amsterdam also proved charging stations?), it does call upon citizens to ‘take their responsibility’ for their own safety, with all possible consequences. For instance, what if you choose not to opt-in? can you then be held accountable if panic breaks out , or places get too busy? During an earlier-reported workshop with surveillance personnel from the Netherlands, I presented one future scenario based on ‘participatory surveillance. In this scenario, mobile phone users in public space were asked to participate with the locate police by switching on their cameras, where police could, via an app, could use mobile phone camera as remote CCTV’s, or ‘extra eyes’. Most participants opposed this type of application, dismissing at too obtrusive, and putting too much responsibility to citizens. Apparently, their worries were not heard here.. I am very curious what happens if something happens..
 
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FBI tracking smart- phones in the states

Published on April 9, 2013 by

Typically something that falls under the category of ‘less surprising but more worrisome than expected’? The FBI and Verizon (the min network-provider in the States) have be collaborating to develop tools to track smart- phones. See full article at wired.com

source: wired.com

 
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Google Glasses as surveillance tool

Published on April 9, 2013 by

 

The company TASER, famous for developing its very friendly police-tools, have spread a rumor about testing and developing Google Glasses for police officers to user as a surveillance tool (face recognition via direct matching of live view w existing database). The reporter in the story makes the often-made reference to Robocop as a close-to-now future of a police-officer. (also, check the video).

Question here raise on how equality of availability and transparency play out when police-officers but maybe also citizens start wearing these glasses in public space, or specifically, in nighttime districts? Where already the smartphone and its often multiple camera create new imbalances and instabilities concerning what surveillance footage and data is, and where and how data is shared,  something like Google Glasses will create even an even more problematic situation and ‘opaqueness’ of surveillance. (as a citizen, I now cannot know anymore who is filming what, why, and where it will be shared). It makes you wonder if indeed I also want and need ‘to wear my sunglasses at night’, only to have the Google galsses-app that shows me which other Google Glasses are filming me?

source: the next web

 

 
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Drone use cause for increasing concern amongst politicians in the Netherlands

Published on March 18, 2013 by
Apparently, the police force in the Netherlands is, so far occasionally, using drones. Politicians are getting more worried about the use of drones, as its use is growing while there are no or little rules or laws in place. Some politicians are even worried about the privacy of citizens! (this is highly ironic, because Dutch politics is quite (in) famous for allowing companies and other countries to spy on its citizens, and it has a track record of in-transparency when it comes to f.i. phone- and Internet tracking,  data storage and so on.).
My question would be why citizens worry about a flying camera when they should while still posting their complete life online. In other words, if the police wants to find you, chances are that they can do that more easily while sitting behind their laptop than flying a drone through your village.
In my (first-sight) opinion, the fear of drones is one that comes from SF movies and images and the idea feeds nicely into dystopian futures of a semi-automatic control state. However, the idea of drones is not that new (when we put a camera on a commercial airliner we call it ‘in-flight entertainment’ and nobody complains). I do agree with some politicians in the article that use of drones by police should be very carefully examined and should be bound by very strict laws and regulation. Another aspect that worris is me is: how do I recognize a police-drone from the one my neighbor made or bought? And if these things turn commercial (see link nytimes), which they probably will, this scenario is not so far from reality and much more worry-some than that couple of drones used by the police…
bron/ source: nos.nl
 
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