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The Internet has been transformed in the past years from a system primarily oriented on information provision into a medium for communication and community-building. The notion of “Web 2.0”, social software, and social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and MySpace have emerged in this context. With such platforms comes the massive provision and storage of personal data that are systematically evaluated, marketed, and used for targeting users with advertising. In a world of global economic competition, economic crisis, and fear of terrorism after 9/11, both corporations and state institutions have a growing interest in accessing this personal data. Here, contributors explore this changing landscape by addressing topics such as commercial data collection by advertising, consumer sites and interactive media; self-disclosure in the social web; surveillance of file-sharers; privacy in the age of the internet; civil watch-surveillance on social networking sites; and networked interactive surveillance in transnational space. This book is a result of a research action launched by the intergovernmental network COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology).
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Christian Fuchs is professor and chair for media and communication studies at Uppsala University's Department of Informatics and Media Studies. He is also board member of the Unified Theory of Information Research Group (Austria) and editor of tripleC (cognition, communication, co-operation): Journal for a Global Sustainable Information Society. He is author of many publications in the fields ICTs & society, media & society, information society studies, and critical theory.
Kees Boersma is an associate professor for Science and Technology Studies at VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Anders Albrechtslund is an assistant professor of Surveillance and Ethics at Aalborg University, Denmark.
Marisol Sandoval is a research associate at the University of Salzburg, Austria.Review:
'With its careful balance between theoretical and empirical, critical and relatively neutral perspectives on the internet and surveillance, this excellent collection helps to define the challenges we face in understanding and coming to terms with social media and the still evolving network environment. Its impressive scope, accomplished through contributions from an international community of scholars updates the familiar, while setting the ground upon which future assessments of exploitation, alienation and resistance will have to begin once again.' – Oscar H. Gandy, Jr., Professor Emeritus, University of Pennsylvania
'The spread of digital technologies presents the opportunity of people accessing and producing information more readily than ever before, a liberating potential. However, it also means that each and every one of us leaves a digital trace whenever we use credit cards, undertake a Google search, or pass through card-operated barriers. The opportunities for harvesting information – for using surveillance to order and organise people and places – is unprecedented. From the compelling reflections of pioneering analyst Thomas Mathieson, through sophisticated theoretical observations from the likes of Christian Fuchs and David Lyon, to richly-detailed case studies, this is a volume to savoured.' – Professor Frank Webster, Head of Department of Sociology, City University London and author of Theories of the Information Society, 3rd edition 2006
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