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The age of surveillance capitalism : the fight for a human future at the new frontier of power / Shoshana Zuboff.

By: Zuboff, Shoshana, 1951-.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: New York, New York : PublicAffairs, 2019Copyright date: ©2019Edition: First edition.Description: x, 691 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm.Content type: text | still image Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9781610395694 (hardback).Subject(s): Consumer behavior -- Data processing | Consumer profiling -- Data processing | Information technology -- Social aspects | Information societyDDC classification: 306.3 Summary: Shoshana Zuboff, named "the true prophet of the information age" by the Financial Times, has always been ahead of her time. Her seminal book In the Age of the Smart Machine foresaw the consequences of a then-unfolding era of computer technology. Now, three decades later she asks why the once-celebrated miracle of digital is turning into a nightmare. Zuboff tackles the social, political, business, personal, and technological meaning of "surveillance capitalism" as an unprecedented new market form. It is not simply about tracking us and selling ads, it is the business model for an ominous new marketplace that aims at nothing less than predicting and modifying our everyday behavior--where we go, what we do, what we say, how we feel, who we're with. The consequences of surveillance capitalism for us as individuals and as a society vividly come to life in The Age of Surveillance Capitalism's pathbreaking analysis of power. The threat has shifted from a totalitarian "big brother" state to a universal global architecture of automatic sensors and smart capabilities: A "big other" that imposes a fundamentally new form of power and unprecedented concentrations of knowledge in private companies--free from democratic oversight and control.
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Non-Fiction (NEST) 306.3 ZUB Checked out 16/10/2019

Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

The challenges to humanity posed by the digital future, the first detailed examination of the unprecedented form of power called "surveillance capitalism," and the quest by powerful corporations to predict and control our behavior.

In this masterwork of original thinking and research, Shoshana Zuboff provides startling insights into the phenomenon that she has named surveillance capitalism. The stakes could not be higher: a global architecture of behavior modification threatens human nature in the twenty-first century just as industrial capitalism disfigured the natural world in the twentieth.
Zuboff vividly brings to life the consequences as surveillance capitalism advances from Silicon Valley into every economic sector. Vast wealth and power are accumulated in ominous new "behavioral futures markets," where predictions about our behavior are bought and sold, and the production of goods and services is subordinated to a new "means of behavioral modification."
The threat has shifted from a totalitarian Big Brother state to a ubiquitous digital architecture: a "Big Other" operating in the interests of surveillance capital. Here is the crucible of an unprecedented form of power marked by extreme concentrations of knowledge and free from democratic oversight. Zuboff's comprehensive and moving analysis lays bare the threats to twenty-first century society: a controlled "hive" of total connection that seduces with promises of total certainty for maximum profit--at the expense of democracy, freedom, and our human future.
With little resistance from law or society, surveillance capitalism is on the verge of dominating the social order and shaping the digital future--if we let it.

Includes bibliographical references and index.

Shoshana Zuboff, named "the true prophet of the information age" by the Financial Times, has always been ahead of her time. Her seminal book In the Age of the Smart Machine foresaw the consequences of a then-unfolding era of computer technology. Now, three decades later she asks why the once-celebrated miracle of digital is turning into a nightmare. Zuboff tackles the social, political, business, personal, and technological meaning of "surveillance capitalism" as an unprecedented new market form. It is not simply about tracking us and selling ads, it is the business model for an ominous new marketplace that aims at nothing less than predicting and modifying our everyday behavior--where we go, what we do, what we say, how we feel, who we're with. The consequences of surveillance capitalism for us as individuals and as a society vividly come to life in The Age of Surveillance Capitalism's pathbreaking analysis of power. The threat has shifted from a totalitarian "big brother" state to a universal global architecture of automatic sensors and smart capabilities: A "big other" that imposes a fundamentally new form of power and unprecedented concentrations of knowledge in private companies--free from democratic oversight and control.

Table of contents provided by Syndetics

  • Introduction
  • 1 Home or Exile in the Digital Future (p. 3)
  • Part I The Foundations of Surveillance Capitalism
  • 2 August 9, 2011: Setting the Stage for Surveillance Capitalism (p. 27)
  • 3 The Discovery of Behavioral Surplus (p. 63)
  • 4 The Moat Around the Castle (p. 98)
  • 5 The Elaboration of Surveillance Capitalism: Kidnap, Corner, Compete (p. 128)
  • 6 Hijacked: The Division of Learning in Society (p. 176)
  • Part II The Advance of Surveillance Capitalism
  • 7 The Reality Business (p. 199)
  • 8 Rendition: From Experience to Data (p. 233)
  • 9 Rendition from the Depths (p. 255)
  • 10 Make Them Dance (p. 293)
  • 11 The Right to the Future Tense (p. 329)
  • Part III Instrumentarian Power for a Third Modernity
  • 12 Two Species of Power (p. 351)
  • 13 Big Other and the Rise of Instrumentarian Power (p. 376)
  • 14 A Utopia of Certainty (p. 398)
  • 15 The Instrumentarian Collective (p. 416)
  • 16 Of Life in the Hive (p. 445)
  • 17 The Right to Sanctuary (p. 475)
  • Conclusion
  • 18 A Coup from Above (p. 495)
  • Detailed Table of Contents (p. 526)
  • Acknowledgments (p. 532)
  • Notes (p. 537)
  • Index (p. 665)

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

Zuboff (emer., Harvard Business School) offers a definitive, stunning analysis of how digital giants like Google, Facebook, etc. have single-mindedly pursued data on human behavior as fodder for generating predictions and shaping outcomes salable to advertisers and others. She calls this surveillance capitalism. The industry now produces not only phones and computers that collect digitized data about users but also "smart" data-gobbling TVs, Alexas, children's toys, clothing, medical monitors, and even stickers and Pokémon GO designed to capture data on an individual's location, language, voice, heartbeat, and emotion and use the data to predict and mold human actions, mainly purchases and political behavior. The author's research was thorough, and she documents it in 120 pages of notes. Zuboff stands on the shoulders of Frank Pasquale (The Black Box Society: The Secret Algorithms That Control Money and Information, CH, Jun'15, 52-5426) and Ken Auletta (Googled: The End of the World as We Know It, CH, Jul'10, 47-6349), among numerous others. The scope of her analysis is extraordinary; in addition to covering philosophical, social, and political implications she discusses needed privacy regulation. Undergraduates fascinated by technology will love the stories and get the points, but perhaps skip the more philosophical passages. This book is pathbreaking, illuminating, and unnerving. Summing Up: Essential. All readers. --Mehrene Larudee, Hampshire College

Kirkus Book Review

An argument that Google and other internet-based firms are creating a new form of capitalism based on the monetizing of human experience."Digital connection is now a means to others' commercial ends," writes Zuboff (Business Administration/Harvard Business School; In The Age of the Smart Machine: The Future of Work and Power, 1988). In a 2014 essay, the author first described the "profoundly undemocratic social force" she calls surveillance capitalism. In this exhaustive, often repetitive elaboration, the author defines the concept as "a new market form that claims human experience as a free source of raw material for hidden commercial practices." Later in the book, she elaborates: "Every casual search, like, and click [becomes] an asset to be tracked, parsed, and monetized by some company." This relentless search for and use of personal data is not happenstance or an inevitable result of digital technology. Rather, it is a "calculated," little-noticed pursuit by commercial interestsacting under the guise of a utopian vision for the internetto create "prediction products" that "anticipate what you will do now, soon, and later" and are traded in the marketplace. Invented by Google, adopted by Facebook and Microsoft, and with evidence that Amazon engages in it, the "unprecedented" market form is poised to become the "dominant" shape of capitalism, abrogating "the peoples' right to a human future." The shift from "serving users to surveilling them" occurred at a time of diminished government oversight and regulation and the post-9/11 emphasis on security over privacy. Based on research and interviews, the author thoughtfully examines the economic and philosophical implications of surveillance capitalism; warns that our children, in their ceaseless quest for connectivity, are harbingers of what lies ahead; and urges public outrage over the theft of our humanity. Other topics include Pokmon Go and behaviorist B.F. Skinner and his acolytes.A big, sprawling, and alarming case for "the darkening of the digital dream." This will appeal to specialists; general readers will wish it were much shorter. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.