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<nettime> democracy and decentralization
allan siegel on Sat, 29 Nov 2014 21:10:37 +0100 (CET)


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<nettime> democracy and decentralization


   Hello,
   Well, there is a difference between actual physical control and the
   propogated illusion of control (thanks Brian for bringing Foucault back
   into the discussion - I have the feeling he never left).  If we accept
   or passively follow the various socialising paradigms where
   mega-companies such as Google exercise control then we fall into that
   behavioral abyss charted in 1984 and other dystopic works describing
   the collapse or devolution of democratic norms. As, perhaps, (as
   indicated below) what is important is maintaining, continuous
   invigorating, the terrain upon which the totalitarian nature of the
   neoliberal hyper-capitalist infrastructure can be contested. In this
   context decentralisation of forms/means of communication are an
   imperative - without vibrant discursive social spaces reflective of the
   social needs and desires that permeate daily life we are only so much
   fodder for the GoogleFacebook singularity, one-dimensional, social
   mechanisms.

   Best

   allan

   "Sonja Buchegger is leading a group of scientists at KTH who are
   creating building blocks that developers could use to launch
   decentralized, distributed networks, which would not only be difficult
   to interfere with, but would also protect people from government
   snooping.
   "The internet itself is not centralized it would be hard to shut down,"
   Buchegger says. "It was built as a robust, decentralized tool to
   communicate; and we can do the same for other services that are now
   centralized, like social networks."
   Whether the demand for such networks would go mainstream any time soon
   is hard to tell. Buchegger notes that it is difficult for most people
   to wrap their head around the notion that their personal information is
   exposed on web-based email and social platforms.
   "The whole privacy issue online is very young, and the population is
   not used to thinking in this way," she says. "Offline, we know how to
   protect our privacy; we know who can overhear us; we see who is in the
   room with us and we know whether we can trust those people; but online
   we haven't really grasped who the audience is and how that changes over
   time."
   Buchegger's research is focused on the privacy issues of distributed
   peer-to-peer (P2P) networks, that is, the underlying infrastructure for
   a decentralized system in which people could store their data beyond
   the reach of data miners or government surveillance."
   Read more at:
   http://phys.org/news/2014-05-decentralized-networks-democracy.html


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