Shoshana Zuboff: ‘Surveillance capitalism is an assault on human autonomy’

From “Shoshana Zuboff: ‘Surveillance capitalism is an assault on human autonomy’

Every time Zuboff speaks in public, she asks the audience: “What are the concerns that bring you here?” People call out words: privacy; dystopia; control; monopoly; manipulation; intrusion; exploitation; democracy; misinformation; fear; freedom; power; rebellion; slavery; resistance. Everywhere the words are virtually the same. What can be done? People object, but nothing happens. Doesn’t that lead to lassitude? “Regulation,” she says, firmly. “This is what the tech companies fear most. We say that markets that trade in human futures are illegal – like the slave trade was made illegal.” Then we design “programs as a closed loop” and “reclaim the idea that we can have the digital without surveillance capitalism”. This will require the “indignation” of citizens, journalists, scholars and law-makers. “Surveillance capitalism has had 20 years unimpeded by law. But it is very young.”

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