Post-Privacy or the Politics of Labour, Intelligence and Information

This text argues that the erosion of privacy is not a by-product of information and communication technologies, but a systemic property of informational capitalism. The foundational myths of the information society motivate and legitimise the building of control systems applying probabilistic techniques to control future risks. At the root of this configuration are antagonistic labour relationships which have determined the path of technological development since the Industrial Revolution. Those tendencies have reached a culmination in the recent neo-liberal crisis. The digital commons offers itself as an incomplete and tentative remedy.

Note: This text is a draft version of a contribution to OPEN, Cahier on art and the public domain, Nr. 19. This text benefitted substantially from written comments by Brian Holmes and John Barker.

A widely referenced definition of privacy is that "privacy is the claim of individuals, groups or institutions to determine for themselves when, how and to what extent information about them is communicated to others"1 If we accept this definition and look at the current state of affairs, then it becomes quickly clear that today we have very little control over information about ourselves. The use of surveillance techniques such as CCTV, but more importantly, techniques summarised under the term data mining, is so widespread that it can be argued that we live in 'surveillance societies'2The dramatic rise of surveillance by means of data mining techniques, sometimes called 'dataveillance', gets 'explained' by the growing adoption of information and communication technologies (ICT). But that in fact does not explain anything. It is important to understand that the use of surveillance techniques for reasons of government and commerce is much older than ICT. The difference now is that the information society is a society which makes itself uniquely dependent on those technologies. For almost every social problem there is assumed to be a fix involving ICT3. This way of thinking is based on foundational myths of the information age which developed during the formative period of industrial capitalism. Surveillance and dataveillance are now carried out for a myriad of reasons and are in a way 'systemic' that goes far beyond invasion of privacy alone. Data mining is not merely a passive action of preventive accumulation of knowledge but the basis of a widespread technique called 'social sorting' whereby semi-automated decision making processes define access to services and goods. The gathering of personalised information therefore is not an unwelcome by-product of technology but a key element of the way modern mass societies under capitalist conditions work.

A whole range of social actors are fighting the erosion of privacy ranging from national privacy campaign groups such as Foebud. e.V. in Germany, in Austria, the EFF and ACLU in the USA, to the European umbrella organisation EDRI. Some of those privacy campaign groups are organising the annual 'Big Brother Awards' (BBA), where the worst anti-privacy measures are 'honoured' with the BBA. In Great Britain, where the BBA was invented, the physical object awarded to the anti-privacy offender is a statue of a military boot stamping on a head. I argue that the efforts of privacy campaigners are, while well intentioned and in individual cases quite successful, bound to fail. The jackboot is not an image that people living in liberal democracies associate with their reality. The Big Brother analogy fails because the societies of the rich North are much more complex than Orwell could imagine in 1948, when he wrote his novel. In order to develop effective strategies against the erosion of basic rights such as privacy, we need to understand what privacy stood for and meant in the historic context when it emerged as an important social category, and we need to understand the current overall political, economic, technological and socio-cultural dynamics of our time4.

Privacy is considered to be an important category because of its constitutive function in the political-philosophical framework of liberalism. The going definition of liberal democracy is based on the separation between the public and the private sphere which expresses the idea of the protection of individual freedom and autonomy from unjust intrusions or regulations of the state5.Moreover, the intimate as the nucleus of the private sphere is considered indispensible for the formation of a public sphere6. This conception of liberalism goes back to the English Revolution in the 17th century and is formulated in the work of John Locke7. The decisive period for liberal democracies was the late 18th and early 19th century, when the Industrial Revolution started in England. Habermas emphasises the contribution of bourgeois citizen journalists to the development of the public sphere. "A political consciousness developed in the public sphere of civil society which, in opposition to absolute sovereignty, articulated the concept of and demand for general and abstract laws and which ultimately came to assert itself (i.e. public opinion) as the only legitimate source of this law", writes Habermas8. Habermas acknowlegdes that the political function of the public sphere could only gain valency during "that specific phase in the developmental history of civil society as a whole in which commodity exchange and social labour became largely emancipated from governmental directives"9. The market, Habermas concludes, was the social precondition for a 'developed' bourgeois public sphere, where civil society articulated itself 'with a state authority responding to its needs'10.

The work of E.P.Thompson11 shows that the 'reasoning public' was not confined to the bourgeoisie. In 1792, inspired by the French Revolution, the London Corresponding Society started to meet in taverns and private houses, bookshops and cafes to read revolutionary literature and demand political reforms such as universal suffrage. Other popular societies were set up in regional centres such as Sheffield and Norwich. These 'English Jacobins' placed high value on self-education, egalitarianism, rational criticism of religious and political institutions, a conscious republicanism and a strong internationalism12. They adopted forms of grassroots self-organisation such as rotating chairmanship and organisational transparency. The ruling class reacted through the suspension of habeas corpus in 1794, followed by the Seditious Meetings Act and the Combination Act of 1799. As a result, the 'plebeian radicals' failed to create stronger ties with those parts of the bourgeosie who, under different conditions (e.g. no war with France), may have sided with them. The revolutionaries were driven leftwards and underground13. Although politically defeated for the time being, their attitudes and practices pre-configured many aspects of the political consciousness and forms of organisation of later trade unionism and working class activism. After the end of the Napoleonic Wars, working class activism re-emerged and working class writers and readers created a Radical reading public. "The working class ideology which matured in the (Eighteen)Thirties [...] put an exceptionally high value on the rights of the press, of speech, of meeting and of personal liberty," explains Thompson and dismisses "the notion to be found in some late 'Marxist' interpretation' hat these values have been inherited from 'bourgeois individualism"14.

The particular conditions set by the early defeat of the English working class had a defining influence on the path of technological development out of antagonistic class relationships. The process of industrialisation saw the creation of large factories whose design primarily served the aim of keeping workers under control. A specific version of technological progress under capitalist conditions was set in motion, which sought direct control of workers at the site of production and the displacement of skilled human labour through machines. "It is a result of the division of labour in manufacture that the worker is brought face to face with the intellectual potentialities of the material process of production as the property of another and as a power that rules over him," wrote Karl Marx15. Despite many changes in the world since then, those basic tendencies have remained the same or have only intensified.

Armand Mattelart16 argues that an information-age-before-the-name started in France with Concordet's conception of statistics as a 'social physics' at the time of the French Revolution. Enlightenment philosophers made mathematical thinking the yardstick for 'judging the quality of citizens and the values of universalism'. From Concordet via the British tax system during the Napoleonic wars, this leads in the course of the 19th century to an 'insurance society'17 where the profitability of businesses and the success of governments depends on the ability to apply probabilistic 'technologies' for the prediction and management of the future. The philosopher and historian of science Simon Schaffer says that Great Britain in the early 19th century "simultaneously embodied the growing system of social surveillance and the emerging mechanisation of natural philosophies of mind"18 According to Schaffer, the discourse on the 'politics of intelligence' of the time located 'intelligence' in the machinery and its conception, while at the same time the unity of manual and mental labour was broken up.A key protagonist in this ideological battle was Charles Babbage, the designer of the 'difference engine' and the 'analytic engine'. Babbage was inspired by Gaspard de Prony's application of the principle of the division of labour to the task of converting old measurements into the new uniform decimal system. De Prony used badly educated human 'computers' who mechanically carried out the necessary calculations devised by trained mathematicians. Babbage's 'dream' was to implement such a division of labour in a machine. The displacement of mental labour by a machine was instantly conceived of as constructing 'intelligent machines' by the circle around Babbage that included Ada Lovelace. This 'vision' was developed alongside an analogy between the internal organisation of Babbage's mechanical calculators and the view of the mechanised factory as a Benthamite Panopticon.

Schaffer argues that Babbage was one among a number of 'factory tourists' - middle class intellectuals who travelled to the new factory districts in the north of England - who at the same time described the rise of the automated factory and helped to bring it into being. In their discourse, explains Schaffer, "the account of the factory as a transparent and rational system was designed to demolish traditional and customary networks of skill and artisan culture." Not only did the new factories make artisans unemployed, but also their contribution to the development of the new machine tools had to be talked down to legitimize the existing class structure. Babbage's greatest legacy, however, is probably the formulation of the Babbage principle, which, according to Schaffer, 'applied equally to the regulation of the factory and of the calculating engines':

“That the master manufacturer by dividing the work to be executed into different processes, each requiring different degrees of skill or of force, can purchase exactly that precise quantity of both which is necessary for each process.”


Schaffer proposes to understand the 'politics of intelligence' of the early 19th century as the forerunner of the project of artificial intelligence (AI) as developed by the pioneers of the computer age, Turing, Shannon, von Neumann and Wiener20. The 100 years between Babbage and the first electronic computer saw the development of 'modern management' and the 'control revolution'.

Harry Braverman sees 'Charles Babbage [...] as probably the most direct forerunner of F.W.Taylor'21, the inventor of scientific management. According to Braverman, Taylorism can be defined as a science of the management of others' work under capitalist conditions. The 'absolute necessity' to dictate to the worker the precise manner in which work is to be performed'22 made it necessary for management to gather together 'all of the traditional knowledge which in the past has been possessed by the workmen and then of classifying, tabulating and reducing this knowledge to rules, laws, and formulae ...'23. The three principles of scientific management, 'the dissociation of the labour process from the skills of the workers'24, 'the separation of conception from execution'25 the creation of a monopoly of knowledge about the work process and the use of this monopoly to control each step of the labour process and its mode of execution26, these principles, argues Braverman, helped bringing into being modern management27. The concept of control expressed in those principles requires that 'every activity in production have its several parallel activities in the management center28. Parallel to the flow of things a flow of paper comes into existence, created by the new professional class of managers who are busy with the gathering of data, the planning, organisation and supervision of production29.

The concept of control expressed in those principles requires that 'every activity in production have its several parallel activities in the management center. Parallel to the flow of things a flow of paper comes into existence, created by a whole new range of professions who are busy with the gathering of data, the planning, organisation and supervision of production30. Taylor started communicating his findings in the 1890s, but we can easily grasp how this parallel flow of paper has meanwhile been transformed into a flow of information. The flow of information is not just a parallel realm but the accumulated 'intelligence' of management encoded in software. There is, however, nothing 'natural' in this development. The path of technological development is not neutral but determined by conditions arising from antagonistic labour relationships and the 'need' for top management to keep the strings of control tightly in their hands31. The privileging of abstract knowledge over skilled labour, motivates and legitimises the creation of surveillance techniques as a triumph of managerial efficiency. The introduction of mass production and in particular the building of railways and the use of coal, argues Beniger32, first triggers a 'crisis of control' in the late 19th century, which then gets resolved through the combination of a number of innovations: the development of modern management, of modern accounting and the introduction of modern media such as the the telegraph, telephone, typewriter. Together, those enable the creation of modern buerocracy resulting in the particular form of organisation embodied in the corporation. There are strong co-dependencies in those techno-economic 'revolutions'. Railroads and the telegraph grow across the North American continent literally 'together'. The first companies to develop modern management techniques are themselves 'networks': railroads, telegraph and telephone networks33. The growing size of organisations needed to organise mass production makes enhanced information processing capabilities necessary. The internal organisation of the new corporations relies on the principles of scientific management, the division and subdivison of labour and the application of the Babbage principle on remuneration. All these developments together drive capitalism's hunger for data. While the invention of the computer during the second World War and for military reasons has been stressed, it would be more feasible to say that computers and telecommunications almost necessarily arrived as a consequence of the development of the modern corporation and the structures enabling and surrounding mass production based on techno-scientific rationalisation. When the American system of mass production, called Fordism, became the leading technological paradigm after WWII, it depended on certain macroeconomic stabilisation factors which resulted in the requirement not only to control the production process but also the markets34. For the corporations, predicting and influencing future levels of consumption became a key part of their activity.

In the early 20th century a number of techniques were developed which can be summarised as 'mass feedback': market research, the Gallup poll, opinion surveys, indices of retail sales and Nielsen's radio rating35. New sociological schools started empirical research on 'the effects of media on receivers and the constant evolution of knowlegde, behaviour, attitudes, emotions, opinions and actions'. This research was not purely academic but carried out in response to practical objectives36. The sponsors of those studies were concerned about the effects of government information campaigns, advertisement campaigns and army propaganda during wartime37. The measurement of audiences with a view on regulating their behaviour as consumers and voters became the basis of what Brian Holmes calls Neilsenism38, an interpretation of society as a cybernetic systems with informational flows as control loops. The notions of 'information', of 'feedback' and of 'systems' serve as an intermediate for a number of different disciplines in research which all depend on the gathering of quantitative 'information' about social properties of individuals and groups which effectively belong to the 'private sphere' of those people and groups.

As Brian Holmes argues, we should see both continuity and change in the transition from Fordism to Post-Fordism. By the end of the 1960s the Fordist 'regime of accumulation' enters a crisis resulting from the rigidities of the system, successful imitation by competitors and student and worker protest. From within the old techno-economic paradigm a new paradigm based on microprocessors, telecommunications and information unfolds (Perez 2002). Concomitant with those shifts and transformations is the emergence of an advanced version of systems theory and 2nd order cybernetics. More than ever 'integrated to larger control systems' rely on predictive algorithms', writes Brian Holmes. But this upgraded paradigm of cybernetic control is no longer based on narrow functionalist and behaviorist ideas of 'manipulation'. Instead, it relies on more indirect, more internalised, more capillary forms of power and self-control. In the new post-industrial societies, the 'major professional preoccupation is preemptively shaping the consciousness of the consumer'39. The restructuring of management hierarchies towards more decentralisation, increased autonomy of workers in production and more individualism and freedom in society in general all point towards a greater margin of autonomy.The rise of financial markets, however, strengthens the capacity for the centralisation of capital and power. And the perceived freedom of the 'prosumer' relies on sophisticated monitoring and control techniques which thanks to the perfectioning of ICT become smaller, less obtrusive and near ubiquituous.

In informational capitalism, the same technologies that appear to be fun and a vehicle for self-realisation at the front-end have an entirely different dimension at the back-end. At the front-end, the aesthetics of the commodity40 makes seductive promises about the use-value of goods through advertisement, shopping windows, beautifully arranged department stores. At the back-end workers are under fairly strict and direct forms of control. The relationship between front-end and back-end is technically expressed as the one between server and client. It is in the nature of capitalist societies to emphasise the user interface while hiding the back-end function. The basic analogy that binds together the virtual and the real world is that of a 'society of the interface'. The interface can be a web-page for e-commerce, or a web-platform with some social participatory function such as Facebook; but the 'interface' can also be a cashier's desk in a bank or a retail store.

On the web, for instance, the 'empowerment' of the user on Web 2.0 platforms has been emphasised by many authors. Those platforms, however, are based on centralised server infrastructures, entirely under the control of the company hosting those social interactions. Although digital networks have highly distributed network topologies in principle, the commercialisation of the net has led to increased centralisation so that, when it comes to accumulation of knowledge, the server back-end is the privileged site. techniques developed during the first decades of the 20th century summarised under 'mass feedback' have become greatly enhanced through digitalisation and the ready availability of user data in server log-files, data-bases, information exchanges. The automated analysis of data flows passing through networked information structures creates the new knowlegde of power. At the front-end this promises greater use-value, as Facebook automatically proposes new friends, or Amazon proposes new books (and sometimes with astonishing accuracy). At the server side ever more precise knowledge allows the targeting of individuals and their social networks based on data mining and 'profiling'. The user profiles and their networked relationships become commodities which can be traded between companies, and this is probably the biggest 'asset' of social network sites.

With the increased pervasiveness of ICTs ever more areas in society have a dual existence as both virtual and real, as an analog space with face-to-face communications and a connected electronic space which is registering real-time information about interactions at the front-end and relaying that to the back-end. As many of those businesses are globally acting corporations, tighter data protection in one country can be conveniently circumvented by locating the server back-end in a low regulation country. The intersection of virtual networked and real space enables a key component of globalisation, so called logistics or supply chain management (SCM) which is necessary for Just-in-time (JIT) production. JIT has increased the need for tight control of logistics stretching over continents and involving sophisticated technologies such as RFID tags, raw materials, manufactured parts, end products and retail outlets. Those many components are linked in such a way, that "it can be argued that JIT production is responsible for the change in capitalist production from a push economy to a pull economy"41 Mute magazine (no pagination).That means that when a customer takes a can of baked beans from a shelf at Tesco's the information is transmitted to all those along the supply chain and the process is put in motion where the item starts getting replaced. Brian Ashton argues that workers in the logistics industries are bearing the brunt of the competitive pressures in those global supply chains. Road transport turns into a 'sweatshop on wheels', 'seafarers work in horrendous conditions under the flags of convenience system and dockers are subjected to work speeds that are set by automated guided vehicles (AGV’s), automated stackers and semi automated cranes'. The 'emergence of the giant logistical companies has gone hand in hand with the withdrawal of the state from the transport infrastructure industries,' argues Ashton. After 9/11 the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code was upgraded which led to the building of visible and invisible security walls around ports. The police and security services have been given new rights to carry out checks on dock workers and to share information with foreign intelligence agencies. "If a worker refuses to undergo security clearance he or she will be sacked," writes Ashton. The new security regulations make it more difficult for representatives of transport unions to make inspections on the actual working conditions in ports. As Saskia Sassen has noted, recent decades have seen a 'reconstruction of the divide' between the public and the private sphere 'partly through the policies of deregulation, privatization and marketization'42 As ports and other communication and transportation infrastructures get privatised, the workers are subsumed under the private sphere of the giants of the logistics industry. The accumulation of intelligence at the back-end of this infrastructure serves both the controlling interest of the state and of very large corporations.

The developments in JIT support David Lyon's observation, that ICTs enable a convergence of surveillance methods across the public and private sector43. The use of automated software with certain 'decision making support functions' at the front-end or the 'user interface' of businesses - such as banks, retail stores, fast food outlets, delivery services and the now ubiquitous call centre - subjects both workers and consumers under the same surveillance logic. In jubilant stories in trade journals the benefits of new intrusive technologies called 'workforce management software' are being praised. For instance, a software called 'click2staff' is used to log the activities of bank tellers and combines those electronic logs with customer statistics. The process is presented, of course, as entirely neutral, offering benefits both to customers and branch directors44. What it means for the affected members of staff is that their hours are either cut down or expanded depending on automated recommendations made by the software according to 'overtime adherence' and 'salary adherence' policies45. One step further go products such as the Verint Witness Actionable Solutions, a package that promises to deliver 'actionable intelligence'. The product, promises Verint's website, can 'capture customer interactions in their entirety, selectively, on demand, or randomly', 'establish realistic forecasts and performance goals' and, of course, will 'schedule and deploy the right number of staff with the appropriate skills' whereby the latter is a neat summary of the Babbage principle. Verint offers also services to 'law enforcement, national security, intelligence, and government agencies'. The catalogue of surveillance horrors comprises 'communications interception', 'mobile location tracking', 'fusion and data management' and 'integrated video monitoring', not to forget 'tactical communications intelligence'. Verint's 'intelligence' product is very similar to the Siemens Intelligence Platform, which can 'integrate data from many sources' such as 'data retention systems', 'internet adresses merged with geographical information systems', 'traffic control points', 'credit card transactions' and 'DNA analysis database', to give just a few examples of a much longer list.

The Austrian investigative journalist Erich Möchel has worked for more than 15 years on those issues, both as a professional journalist and with NGOs such as quintessenz.at46. Möchel not only questions the legality of those systems, since a collation of data from such a diverse range of sources would actually be highly illegal in most European countries47, but also criticises that this branch of Siemens, now merged into Siemens Nokia, sells such packages and services to countries such as Iran and China48. All that is only possible because as a supplier of telecommunications equipment Siemens Nokia has a decisive competitive advantage: it participates actively in the development of 'legal interception standards' created by the European Telecom Standards Institute (ETSI). Since 1998 an international working group, with strong participation of the USA, called 'SEC - Lawful Interception (LI)' and populated by 'a wild mix of German, Dutch and British secret service personnel' and 'their equipment vendors' is working out how LI is to be made possible by building backdoors into equipment such as mobile phone switches and internet routers. That they are doing so is not a secret conspiracy but has been mandated by the European Data Retention Directive of 2006. This directive forces all suppliers of telecommunications service to keep the log-files of all communications of their users - not the actual content, but the 'who', 'when', 'where', type of meta-information. And this is the type of information that is actually much more useful for data mining than the 'noise' of content. As many commentators point out, one of the most corrosive effects of 'data retention' on civil rights is that it makes possible widespread intelligence gathering without concrete suspicions of illegal activity. The data retention directive also legitimises projects such as the EU funded research program under the maddening title of 'Intelligent information system supporting observation, searching and detection for security of citizens in urban environment', in short INDECT. Described as a platform for the 'registration and exchange of operational data' capable of 'automatic detection of threats and recognition of abnormal behaviour or violence', INDECT aims at extending automated search engine capacities on 'mobile objects', images and video.


The automated detection of 'abnormal behaviour' now reaches deep into the data flows on the net, its major hubs and switches, but also into physical, spatial reality. ICTs delivering 'actionable intelligence' are key technologies of power, monopolising knowledge and control in the hands of management and the executive branch of government. Saskia Sassen argues that globalisation strengthens the power of the executive branches of the state while it weakens the power of the legislative and therefore of democratic control.As the state, in the process called privatisation or deregulation devolves tasks and repsonsibilities to private companies, this creates a move towards 'a privatized executive vis-avis the people and the other parts of government along with an erosion of citizens privacy'49. The other side of the coin of that process is that the executive grants itself ever more secrecy regarding the way it makes its decisions. Four consecutive public inquiries have so far not been able to get to the bottom of those decision making processes in Tony Blair's kitchen cabinet which led to the 'dodgy dossier' which justified invasion of Iraq on the grounds that Iraq could deploy weapons of mass destruction within 45 minutes. While in the wake of the 'war on terror' much attention has been given to measures of surveillance carried out in the name of security, much less attention has been given to that overall dynamic that undermines democracy and weakens the public sphere.

Data surveillance fosters positive discrimination of social groups based on automated decision making. It creates inhumane working conditions for large groups of people which resemble the early panoptical factory on a global scale; and it merges surveillance at the workplace with surveillance of consumers. David Lyon concludes that more is at stake than the 'tired notion of privacy'. He demands a 'politics of information', but when it comes to defining those 'politics of information' Lyon appeals primarily to authorities to take on a bigger responsibility for the data which they have under their control. The politics of information and intelligence cannot rely on a better corporate data protection ethics or improved management of data held by public institutions. An information politics needs to address the topologies of power that linger in the systemic split between front-end and back-end, between client-side and server-side, consumer and producer. It also needs to address inequalities created by the privatisation of the state and of public infrastructures which results in the shielding off from public view of huge industries where democratic rights of workers have been suspended indefinitely. The grey zone where private and governmental dataveillance techniques secretely and quietly converge needs to be put under public scrutiny.

If those tendencies toward ever greater surveillance and the resulting losses in freedom and autonomy are to be reverted, more needs to be done than to re-balance the privat-public divide. The only alternative which offers itself is the rise of the digital commons. The development of the digital commons is specific to the information society and has the potential to open a different path of economic and technological development. Having originated from the Free Software movement in the 1980s, the digital commons has meanwhile found widespread support in arts, culture, scientific publishing and research. It will neither bring 'cyber-communism' nor is it an alternative version of the public sphere. As a new layer in societies that is growing from inside the most advanced sectors of cognitive capitalism, the digital commons allows new alliances to be forged between digital commoners, knowledge workers, garage experimentalists, organic farmers, environmental activists and social movements. The digital commons is built on the recognition that freedom is not something that can be attained individually but through the collective forming of political subjectivities. It has the potential to positively transcend the private-public divide by offering new mechanisms for cooperation, publishing, free associations. But there are also serious obstacles. If the digital commons should become sustainable, information technology needs to become much more environmentally friendly; it also needs a massive decentralisation of the communication infrastructure. Recent trends such as 'cloud computing' go in the opposite direction. Moreover, the digital commons is, just like the natural commons of air, water, soil, subject to exploitation if not regulated by strong rules and social conventions. The foundational myths of the information age which are based on the separation of manual and mental labour and which ascribe 'intelligence' to machines rather than the people who build and program them need to be unveiled so that the impetus for technically mediated control of people ceases.

  • 1. Westin 1967, 7, quoted in Roessler 2001, p. 22
  • 2. David Lyon, 2007. "Surveillance, power, and everyday life" in Robin Mansell, Chris Anthi Avgerou, Danny Quah and Roger Silverstone (eds.) The Oxford Hand Book of Information and Communication Technologies, Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press. Pp 449-472, quoting from online version:
  • 3. Ibid., p. 14
  • 4. An effort to understand this 'overall dynamics' is made through the collaborative research project Technopolitics developed jointly between Brian Holmes, the author and others on
  • 5. Beate Roessler, 2001. Der Wert des Privaten, Frankfurt/Main Suhrkamp. p. 27
  • 6. Habermas, Jürgen. 1989. The structural transformation of the public sphere: an inquiry into a category of bourgeois society. Studies in contemporary German social thought. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press
  • 7. For a critique see McPherson, C.B., 1962/2009. The Political Theory of Possessive Individualism.Hobbes to Locke , Clarendon/OUP
  • 8. Habermas 1989, op.cit., p. 54
  • 9. Ibid., pp. 73-74
  • 10. Ibid., p. 74
  • 11. Thompson, E. P. 1975. The making of the English working class. Harmondsworth: Penguin.
  • 12. Ibid., pp. 199 - 201
  • 13. Ibid., p. 200
  • 14. Ibid., p. 805
  • 15. Karl Marx, 1976. Capital Vol I, p. 482
  • 16. Arman Mattelart, 2001, The Information Society, an Introduction, p. 5
  • 17. Ian Hacking, 1990. The taming of chance, Cambridge University Press.
  • 18. Simon Schaffer, 2007 BABBAGE’S INTELLIGENCE (no pagination)
  • 19. Charles Babbage, 1832. On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures. Quoted from Project Gutenberg:
  • 20. Simon Schaffer, 2007. OK Computer. (no pagination)
  • 21. Braverman, Harry. 1975. Labor and monopoly capital; the degradation of work in the twentieth century. New York: Monthly Review Press. p. 89
  • 22. Ibid., p. 90
  • 23. F.W. Taylor, The principles of scientific management, p. 111, quoted in Braverman 1975, p. 112
  • 24. Braverman 1975, op.cit. p. 113
  • 25. Ibid., p. 114
  • 26. Ibid., p. 119
  • 27. Ibid., p. 120
  • 28. Ibid., p. 125
  • 29. Ibid., p. 126
  • 30. Ibid.
  • 31. Ibid., p. 127
  • 32. James R. Beniger, 1986. The Control Revolution: technological and economic origins of the information society. Harvard University Press
  • 33. Chandler, Alfred D. 1977. The visible hand: the managerial revolution in American business. Cambridge, Mass: Belknap Press.
  • 34. Piore, Michael J., and Charles F. Sabel. 1984. The second industrial divide: possibilities for prosperity. New York: Basic Books.
  • 35. Beniger 1986, op.cit. p. 20
  • 36. Armand and Michèle Mattelart. 1998. Theories of communication: a short introduction. London: Sage Publications. p. 28
  • 37. Ibid.
  • 38. Brian Holmes, 2007. FutureMap or: How the Cyborgs Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Surveillance.
  • 39. Holmes, op.cit.
  • 40. Haug, Wolfgang Fritz. 1986. Critique of commodity aesthetics: appearance, sexuality, and advertising in capitalist society. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
  • 41. Brian Ashton, 2006. Logistics - Factory without walls.
  • 42. Sassen, Saskia. 2006. Territory, authority, rights: from medieval to global assemblages. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. pp. 184-185
  • 43. Lyon 2007, op.cit.
  • 44., 08.07.2002 Banks start to embrace workforce technology
  • 45. cf. Bank of America Sucks, Jan 10 2009
  • 46. Many of the examples in this section are based on Moechel's reserach, published on the website of
  • 47. Futurezone 03.04.2008 Das Siemens-Monster und die Legalitaet
  • 48. Futurezone, 07.04.2008, Datenjagd auf Dissidenten
  • 49. Sassen 2006, op.cit., p. 184