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<nettime> TACIT FUTURES > mass migration + mass surveillance
Krystian Woznicki on Wed, 20 Jan 2016 18:23:56 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> TACIT FUTURES > mass migration + mass surveillance

Hello nettimers,

the follow-up to UN|COMMONS (berlinergazette.de/uncommons) is TACIT
FUTURES. In this annual project the Berliner Gazette continues its work
on the commons vis á vis the pressing challenges posed by the ongoing
mass migration to Europe.

The continent as well as each individual nation state seem incapable of
upholding human rights, social justice and equality. Here, not only the
deteriorating state of our democracies becomes ever more visible.
Moreover, the question of the appropriate democracy model arises anew –
whether democracy can really be confined to national borders or whether
it should be dedicated to global citizen rights.

Yet, post-Paris and post-Cologne hysteria in politics, media and civil
society suggests something else. The majority seems to agree, that
what's spreading in Europe today is not a humanitarian crisis but
actually a security crisis. And that we should not cry for humanity and
democracy, but instead for a stronger police and more authoritarian
control. In fact, that we should continue buying into the new form of
power, which has been unleashed in the course of the War on Terror.

A power, that confronts potential as well as projected threats, while
subjecting us to a culture of fear. A power, that operationalises what
is "yet to happen". Ultimately a power, that renders democracy as well
as future in general into the big-data driven child of algorithmic
logistics. However, rather than buying into this new form of power, it's
high time to question and challenge it. Despite or rather because of the
current pogrom atmosphere.

To begin with, are we ready to expand our notion of surveillance and
understand it as the vehicle of this new form of power? And are we
willing to acknowledge, that today's post-digital surveillance is
reformating not only privacy and citizenship, not only economics and
epidemiology, culture and climate policy, (geo-)politics and
advertising, but all of this at once? Do we need long theoretical
debates or is it enough to sense, that the recognition of refugees and
migrants disrupts the expansion of the new form of power and paves ways
for alternatives?

Can we use Edward Snowden's disclosures about the
surveillance-industry-state-complex to unlock the collective unconscious
and to nurture counter powers? What does it take for us to imagine and
build a democracy that our global, mobile and post-colonial times
deserve – a "democracy without borders" or a "democracy in movement"?
What is holding us back to renegotiate the very basics of social justice
and sociality in general, when facing the growing number of refugees in
Europe? And when do we eventually begin to work on a common future?

In 2016 the Berliner Gazette will explore this terrain in practical and
theoretical ways. We launch TACT FUTURES in the context of the
transmediale with a program entitled "Diving into the Snowden Archives".
It is a series of dialogues curated by Berliner Gazette for the
transmediale 2016.

Here comes the intro, followed by the links to the program module:

The Snowden archives encompass documents leaked by former NSA
subcontractor Edward Snowden and then published in part by major
newspapers including the Guardian, the New York Times, the Washington
Post, and Der Spiegel. These revelations initiated a global debate about
the role of secret services in democracies, citizen rights in the age of
digital networks, and big data and the industries of prediction.

By disclosing the inner workings of a clandestine
government-industry-nexus, the Snowden archives represent a kind of
collective subconscious: something that society was never meant to learn
about itself, its past, present, and future. In that sense the Snowden
files can be seen as a message from "children from an era that is yet to
be received," as Kim Ki-Duk has said. Yet the interpretations of even
the published documents remain unfinished, due to their cryptic language
and specialized information. And only a small percentage have been
published. We can expect more revelations to emerge in the near future,
though it may take decades before they all enter the public domain.

In this sense, the Snowden archives not only represent a repressed
awareness of the design of our social and political present, they also
represent an awareness yet to come, provided we can develop the tools
and capacities to decode and share them. How can we render this
awareness and knowledge common and incorporate it as a vital part of our
common history and common future?

"Tacit Futures: Diving Into Snowden Archives" is a follow-up to
UN|COMMONS and a cooperation between Berliner Gazette and transmediale
in the context of the "Tacit Futures" project by Berliner Gazette.
Guests include Andrew Clement (The Snowden Digital Surveillance
Archive), Sandro Gaycken (Digital Society Institute / dsi.esmt.org),
Evan Light (Snowden Archive-in-a-Box), Geert Lovink (Institute for
Network Cultures), M. C. McGrath (The Snowden Document Search /
Transparency Toolkit), Deborah Natsios (Cryptome.org/The Tally Update),
Pit Schultz (nettime.org), André Rebentisch (meshcon), Maria Xynou
(Surveillance without Borders), John Young (Cryptome.org/The Tally Update).

Panel "Tacit Futures #1: Building Snowden Archives". Info:

Workshops "Tacit Futures #2: Connecting Snowden Archives". Info:

What we also plan to do:

The Berliner Gazette is now working on a special section in its online
newspaper. Around 40 reports, essays and interviews will be published
throughout the year. Creative types of all sorts will get a chance to
speak about the key questions relating to TACIT FUTURES . All texts will
be contributed on a voluntary basis and published under a Creative
Commons license.

In parallel, the Berliner Gazette will organize more than 20 meet-ups,
serving as the project’s cooperative platforms for dialogue about ideas
and projects. Moreover, the Berliner Gazette plans to organize various
partner-events. The "Tacit Futures" project will culminate in the
international Berliner Gazette conference scheduled for October/November
2016 in Berlin.

Please spread the word about! We truly hope, that there will be a way to
wire our ambitions and to embark upon a fruitful exchange.

Best wishes,



Projects, papers, recordings, photos and videos from the 
international conference on the fight for common wealth:  


Projekte, Positionspapiere und Videos von der 
internationalen Konferenz zum Kampf um Gemeineigentum:   


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