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Archive for November 8th, 2019

Every so often one of my news column subtitles branches out so much that it becomes overcrowded and therefore more difficult to use than I would prefer.  With the explosion of surveillance technology in the past few years, the subtitle “Pyrrhic Victory” has swollen from a few items a year to sometimes several per week, so I’ve decided to break it up by repurposing several existing tags and creating one new one.  To make the new headings clear to both you and me, I’ve linked all the “Pyrrhic Victory” items of the past five years below under the headings similar items will appear under in the future.

The new heading Panopticon is now reserved for purely visual surveillance such as license plate readers, Amazon “Ring” and “eye in the sky” systems; previous items of this type appeared in “In the News” #609, 648, 680, 685, 746, 796, 810, 865, 878, 894, 897, 914, 915, 923, 957, 960, 963, 969, 970, 980, and 983

Welcome to the Future will now be used for “predictive policing” and similar systems that pretend to be able to predict “crime” or other behavior, Minority Report style; previous items of this type appeared in “In the News” #563, 645, 697, 765, 916, 922, 944, 964, 967, 971, and 977

I Spy will now be used for database-related items (record access, cell phone metadata, encryption, etc); previous items of this type appeared in “In the News” #646, 673, 677, 691, 738, 752, 767, 781, 787, 820, 824, 826, 836, 864, 865, 880, 898, 903, 904, 911, 930, 955, 958, 961, 962, and 979

Pyrrhic Victory will now mostly be used for the facial (and other biometric) recognition stories which have almost completely taken over the tag in the past three years.

In addition to these four, items specifically relating to the Chinese oppression of the Uighurs will now appear under Quiet Genocide, items about DNA surveillance have and will continue to appear under Micromanagement, and items about data-mining schemes (which were first tested on sex workers) have and will continue to appear under Guinea Pigs.

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