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1984 Today, Tomorrow. Surveillance, Privacy and Human Rights, seen from Media and Social Sciences perspectives

THURSDAY, JUN 10 2010, 06:30 PM

Parallel to the exhibition NineteenEightyFour, that adresses the themes of surveillance and control today through art, the panel discussion revolves around the intellectual understanding of these from professionals in media, communications, sociology and journalism.

Today, the concept of privacy is constantly evolving: traditional concepts are destroyed, social media being key player in that shift. Much of our lives are on the Web and our online behavior leaves trails of data that be followed and mined. Online, everything can be a click away. Social Networks begin to form new infrastructures of social interaction and offer chances for participation, involvement, political engagement and business opportunities. But they also offer possibilities for economic and political exploitation. The outcome is the emergence of "grassroots surveillance" where people increasingly know of each other's activities. "Before, everyone knew everything about you, but you knew who they were. Now, we're moving toward a world where more and more people know about you, but you don't know who they are." (Jon Kleinberg)

The participants consist of Michael Freund, senior research professor at Webster University Vienna and editor and writer for the austrian daily newspaper Der Standard, Steve Lohr, author as well as reporter for the New York Times, Zeynep Tufekci, assistant professor of sociology at the University of Maryland and Matthias Karmasin, professor and chair for media and communications at the University of Klagenfurt. A quarter century after Orwell’s dystopia, they will come together to discuss consequences, new concepts, responsibilities and ways of handling the exposure to modern technology.