Prism: The Internet as New Enclosure

June 11, 2013

Earth First! Newswire


Perhaps you’ve read about the recently revealed Prism program, through which the US National Security Agency has been harvesting data from Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Apple, and other major internet corporations.

Remember, this is the tip of the iceberg. We can’t know how many similar projects are buried deeper in the apparatus of the surveillance state, unrevealed by daring whistleblowers. We do know that the NSA intercepts billions of emails, phone calls, and other forms of communication every day. What they can monitor they can also censor, à la China or Mubarak.

Many have championed the internet as an opportunity to create new commons, resources that can be shared rather than privately owned. But faced with the increasing state and corporate power over the structures through which we interact online, we have to consider the dystopian possibility that the internet represents a new enclosure of the commons:…

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