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The Deleuzian Philosophy of Julian Assange « Fixing the Economists. Julian Assange: A Geometry of Politics Well, I don’t know about you – but I’m getting really sick of the circus that is taking place around Assange.

The Deleuzian Philosophy of Julian Assange « Fixing the Economists

Even the more serious publications are taking interest in what is clearly a farce. What’s more, I’m now seeing typically affected quotes from that washed-up old pseudo-intellectual fart Hitchens turning up in the various articles I read (“Assange has but yet to consider that he, as a member of our humble species and our august culture, should not but show deference at the altar of our expansive, regal and sustaining Civilisation” – okay, that’s not a direct quote, in fact it’s probably less pretentious and thesaurus-heavy than the original… but you get the idea). Wikileaks isn't the only internet threat to governments. As example after example yesterday showed, the response of politicians, media companies, lawyers and large corporations to the interconnectedness offered by the internet has been to reach for legal sanctions to preserve their pre-digital power.

Wikileaks isn't the only internet threat to governments

Western democracies and authoritarian regimes had in common a twentieth century habit of interposing themselves between their citizens, co-opting, regulating, repressing, monitoring interaction between people for their own (frequently legitimate) ends. Capitalist society based whole industries on corporations interposing themselves for commercial gain, particularly the old media, which eagerly established themselves as the authorised medium of community communication and shared experiences (a role institutional churches had previously sought). The Hazards of Nerd Supremacy: The Case of WikiLeaks - Jaron Lanier - Technology. The degree of sympathy in tech circles for both Wikileaks and Anonymous has surprised me.

The Hazards of Nerd Supremacy: The Case of WikiLeaks - Jaron Lanier - Technology

The most common take seems to be that the world needs cyber-pranksters to keep old-school centers of power, like governments and big companies, in check. Cyber-activists are perceived to be the underdogs, flawed and annoying, perhaps, but standing up to overbearing power. It doesn't seem so to me. Wikileaks Exposes Internet's Dissent Tax, not Nerd Supremacy - Zeynep Tufekci - Technology. Jaron Lanier's recent lengthy essay about Wikileaks is not really about Wikileaks; thus, it is unsurprising that he misses the central lesson of this affair.

Wikileaks Exposes Internet's Dissent Tax, not Nerd Supremacy - Zeynep Tufekci - Technology

From the beginning, he makes the fundamental conceptual mistake of conflating individual human beings and powerful institutions, like governments and corporations; he then takes off on a dystopic vision of a world dominated by an imagined "nerd supremacist" ethic of complete transparency, collapse of private life, and unrestricted information flow, in which humanity is the slave of the machine. Horrifying as this vision is, it simply distracts from the main lessons of the Wikileaks affair: the increasing control of (relatively) unaccountable corporations and states over the key components of the Internet, and their increased willingness to use this control in politicized ways to impose a "dissent tax" on content they find objectionable.

Bruce Sterling. Michael Bruce Sterling (born April 14, 1954) is an American science fiction author who is best known for his novels and his work on the Mirrorshades anthology.

Bruce Sterling

This work helped to define the cyberpunk genre.[2] Writings[edit] Bert Olivier Panopticism, Facebook, the 'information bomb', and Wikileaks. In previous posts, I have argued that, at this stage, the subtle and not-so-subtle ways in which Facebook has succeeded in exposing users to more (potential, if not probable) attention from companies marketing commodities or services than they probably anticipated, have no more than financial or economic objectives, but that the potential for extensive social control or psychological manipulation is vast.

Bert Olivier Panopticism, Facebook, the 'information bomb', and Wikileaks

Moreover, just as, in the panoptical prison, where inmates monitor their own behaviour (on the assumption of their constant surveillance by warders with full visual access to them), indications are that individuals are increasingly engaging in a form of “normalising” self-monitoring of behaviour via voluntary self-exposure on internet sites such as Facebook. Bert Olivier » What the WikiLeaks affair tells us about communication.

The world recently became even more complex.

Bert Olivier » What the WikiLeaks affair tells us about communication

In days gone by, personal disgruntlement and consequent “disloyalty” on the part of diplomatic staff in possession of “sensitive” material (and therefore capable of, if not likely, to divulge this to adversaries), sometimes threatened relations between countries — that much has not changed. What has changed, however — and this has made governments vulnerable to citizens’ legitimate criticism as never before (which is a good thing) — is that the sheer extent of potentially embarrassing and even “endangering” information that can be divulged by anyone motivated to do so (for any of a number of reasons), as well as the public reach of any such exposé, has been shown to be vastly in excess of what was previously possible. And that, thanks to an invention that was initially developed by the US military: the internet.

Many Europeans Find U.S. Attacks on WikiLeaks Puzzling. WikiLeaks, Ideological Legitimacy and the Crisis of Empire by Francis Shor. By Francis Shor TruthOut While empires try to maintain their hegemony through economic and military prowess, they must also rely on a form of ideological legitimacy to guarantee their rule.

WikiLeaks, Ideological Legitimacy and the Crisis of Empire by Francis Shor

Such legitimacy is often embedded in the geopolitical reputation of the empire among its allies and reluctant admirers. Once that reputation begins to unravel, the empire appears illegitimate. The establishment of the US empire in the aftermath of World War II built upon its economic and military supremacy. How to Think About WikiLeaks - Alexis Madrigal - Technology. This is a regularly updated post.

How to Think About WikiLeaks - Alexis Madrigal - Technology

It was first published 12/8/2010 at 11:51am. Its time-stamp indicates when it was last changed. LRB · Slavoj Žižek · Good Manners in the Age of WikiLeaks. In one of the diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks Putin and Medvedev are compared to Batman and Robin.

LRB · Slavoj Žižek · Good Manners in the Age of WikiLeaks

It’s a useful analogy: isn’t Julian Assange, WikiLeaks’s organiser, a real-life counterpart to the Joker in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight? In the film, the district attorney, Harvey Dent, an obsessive vigilante who is corrupted and himself commits murders, is killed by Batman. Batman and his friend police commissioner Gordon realise that the city’s morale would suffer if Dent’s murders were made public, so plot to preserve his image by holding Batman responsible for the killings. The film’s take-home message is that lying is necessary to sustain public morale: only a lie can redeem us. No wonder the only figure of truth in the film is the Joker, its supreme villain. Are we living in the end times? Zizek Al Jazeera English.

Who is Behind Wikileaks? “World bankers, by pulling a few simple levers that control the flow of money, can make or break entire economies. By controlling press releases of economic strategies that shape national trends, the power elite are able to not only tighten their stranglehold on this nation’s economic structure, but can extend that control world wide.

Those possessing such power would logically want to remain in the background, invisible to the average citizen.” (Aldous Huxley) Wikleaks is upheld as a breakthrough in the battle against media disinformation and the lies of the US government. Wikileaks Beyond Wikileaks? Corporate media buys you off only if you pose a real danger – radical and subversive to ‘power’. While attacking Wikileaks for corporate collusion, therefore, its original radical potential cannot be overlooked. Wikileaks’ close collaboration with big corporate media and the ‘redactions’ raise serious doubts over whether information is actually flowing freely (Michel Chossudovsky, ‘Who is Behind Wikileaks?’ Dec 13, 2010, Global Research). And yet the Wikileaks’ intervention cannot be cast away in a cynical manner – the only way to welcome it however is by saving it from Wikileaks itself, in particular from its liberal slide.

WikiLeaks en The Guardian: Verslag van een moeizame samenwerking. (pdf)Benkler A Free Irresponsible Press via @CShirky.