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Business and Surveillance in a Time of Big Data

Peter Bloom




(with free eBook)







The corporate world is watching us, but why does no one watch them?

Our contemporary age is confronted by a profound contradiction: on the one hand, our lives as workers, consumers and citizens have become ever more monitored by new technologies. On the other, big business and finance become increasingly less regulated and controllable.

What does this technocratic ideology and surveillance-heavy culture reveal about the deeper reality of modern society? Monitored investigates the history and implications of this modern accountability paradox. Peter Bloom reveals pervasive monitoring practices which mask how at its heart, the elite remains socially and ethically out of control.

Challenging their exploitive 'accounting power', Bloom demands that the systems that administer our lives are oriented to social liberation and new ways of being in the world.

Peter Bloom heads the People and Organisations Department at the Open University, UK, and is the co-founder of the Research Centre 'REEF'. His books include Digital Control: Surveillance and Power in the Age of Big Data (Pluto, 2019) and The CEO Society: The Corporate Takeover of Everyday Life (Zed, 2018). His writing has featured in the Washington Post, Guardian, and New Statesman.

'The data economy features surveillance which is simultaneously everywhere and nowhere. This book is essential reading for those who wish to identify, resist and challenge the surveillance consequences of big data for the individual, for democracy and for society' - Kirstie Ball, University of St Andrews

'Monitored is the nonfiction equivalent of Orwell's 1984. In a terrifying account of the new age of surveillance, Bloom demonstrates how Big Brother is actually Big Data. Society has been fractured by data technologies under the crushing weight of the free market, yet Bloom convincingly argues that monitoring might be yielded to the purpose of radical change' - Simon Springer, author of 'The Discourse of Neoliberalism' and 'The Anarchist Roots of Geography'

'A brisk and insightful guide to our world of increasingly ubiquitous surveillance that poses challenging questions about who is surveilled, who has privacy, and how we are being sold the chains to our own imprisonment' - Nick Srnicek, King's College London

Preface: Completely Monitored
1. Accountable Subjects, Unaccountable Capitalism
2. The Growing Threat of Digital Control
3. Surveilling Ourselves
4. Smart Realities
5. Digital Salvation
6. Planning Your Life at the End of History
7. Totalitarianism 4.0
8. The Revolution Will Not Be Monitored
Published by Pluto Press in Jan 2019
Paperback ISBN: 9780745338620
Hardcover ISBN: 9780745338637
eBook ISBN: 9781786803931

272 pages

129mm x 198mm