Under the Eyes of Big Brother: Risks and Uncertainties in Using Facebook As a Plataform of Political Activism

Tuesday, 12 July 2016: 14:45
Location: Seminar 34 (Juridicum)
Oral Presentation
Jorge MACHADO, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil
Marcio MORETTO, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil
What are the risks of Facebook use by social movements and citizens? What is the risk of political action if it occurs under surveillance? How to act face a growing predictability of a system that monitors all actions and relationships of its users? In recent years there has been a growing use of Web 2.0 for political debate, dissemination of ideas and coordination of political action. In this context, Facebook has been the most significant public space for political articulation on the internet. It has been used as a tool for the political actions and a basis for organizing protests. However, Facebook is a private and controlled space, whose business is based on collecting private information from users, profiling, mapping and analysis of social relations networks. Its data collection does not miss any information entered or chat typed by users. In addition, the platform encourages the user to add new informations and confirm others. Facebook Platform also have sophisticated tools for facial recognition and data processing. Thus the company gets a complete history of the life of every citizen as well as their interests, values and social relationships, enabling multidimensional analyzes and detailed individual profiles. In this paper, we analyze the company's history, the cooperation with PRISM, the positioning in favor of CISPA, the relationship between the US diplomacy, the Internet.org program and the use of algorithms for prioritization of content that are read by users. This paper aims to discuss and reflect on the consequences of using Facebook for political action.