Colin J. Bennett – The Privacy Advocates, Resisting the Spread of Surveillance

Colin J. Bennett

The MIT Press, ISBN 9780262026383, U.S.A., 2008, English
Privacy is one of strangest beasts of our time. It’s something we are supposed to defend strenuously, but also something we give away for free too often. And because of this alternate awareness it would perhaps be best considered as one of the most immaterial belongings of the whole immaterial sphere. Is privacy then doomed to become an endangered species? While discussing this gloomy scenario, this book functions as a sort of WWF or Greenpeace for the issue of privacy. It stresses the need for people, groups and networks to react in a structured way, in order to reach the goal of defending that last frontier against personal invasion from obtrusive governments and corporations. That’s why this is a different book, avoiding technical, sociological or legal explanations, but collecting the fresh voices of first class privacy activists. This is accomplished not through a series of single self-celebrating interviews, but through composing motivations, actions, strategies and goals under a single wide-open perspective. So the scenario is analyzed in terms of local or international campaigns, properly contextualizing them and exposing victories and eventually faults. The author considers this global community as something more than a network of interest: a whole social movement. And if this movement will be able to be self conscious and to propagate, or better permeate, the most sensitive part of society, then it will make a historical change. Last but not least, the book looks at the importance of federate and strict collaborations on specific goals. If copyright has already been completely transformed by global efforts like Creative Commons, the same can be done for privacy, if everyone would join their respective forces.