As I discovered some months ago when reading his book “To Save Everything, Click Here: The Folly of Technological Solutionism” and attending a presentation given by him, you can rely on Evgeny Morozov for wit combined with a sharp critique of digital guru-ism.
His latest post, ostensibly on the Snowden affair, in the Frankfurter Allgemeine pokes holes in the ‘crack cocaine’ addiction of the US security apparatus for ‘Big Data’. Morozov has railed against this accumulation of bits from every device around us and the spin of how all our lives will be enhanced from companies tracking our heartbeats, watching how much we eat and what we chuck in our bins. Open our lives, open our data and we’ll be in a consumerist heaven, linked matrix-like to the unaccountable corporations who feed off us.
This article however, focuses on communications and international politics whilst also presenting an opportunity to take another kick at the myths of ‘the internet’ and ‘cyberspace’. He concludes:
Forget an ambiguous goal like “Internet freedom” – it’s an illusion and it’s not worth pursuing. What we must focus on is creating environments where actual freedom can still be nurtured and preserved.