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Facebook and Privacy: Neoliberal Critique

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Marie McKinnon

on 23 August 2014

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Transcript of Facebook and Privacy: Neoliberal Critique

Presentation Guide
1. Introduction
2. Neoliberalism Defined
3. Neoliberalism, Security and Privacy
4. Privacy Defined
5. Privacy Rights
6. Privacy Breaches
7. "Your" Information on Facebook
8. Dessert... I mean, cookies!
Presentation Guide
Your email, phone number, gender, age, photos, life events, interests, location.... is the beginning
Have you ever thought of all the information you post on Facebook?

What privacy concerns do you have?

In the neoliberal context, this presentation will argue that it is a users responsibility to protect their privacy.

... or as capitalists would say:
the ideology behind modern capitalist society
deregulates the market
emphasis on stability in economic policy
..... Neoliberalism (2)
1 BILLION users
It is the world's most popular social media site.
Why Facebook?
Facebook and Privacy
A Neoliberal Critique
"...after years of secretly monitoring the public, we were astounded that the public would willingly publish information about themselves such as where they live, their political and religious views, who their friends are, personal emails and phone numbers, status updates about where they are and what they are doing, and to post hundreds of photos of themselves online."
First, it is necessary to describe the relationship between liberalism and security:

security - not liberty- is the foundation of liberalism
liberalism in grounded on the basis of government limitation to prevent arbitrary use of power
BUT there is a scope for discretion
this is under prerogative powers

Prerogative gives the executive power to intervene into civil society at any time as long as the intervention is justified in the name of security.

Neoliberalism, Security and Privacy
Quotation from: Campbell and Pederson (see citaitons)
“… heterogeneous set of institutions consisting of various ideas, social and economic policies, and ways of organizing political and economic activity that are quite different from others. Ideally, it includes formal institutions, such as minimalist welfare-state, taxation, and business-regulation programs; flexible labor markets and decentralized capital-labor relations unencumbered by strong unions and collective bargaining; and the absence of barriers to international capital mobility. It includes institutionalized normative principles favoring free-market solutions to economic problems, rather than bargaining or indicative planning, and a dedication to controlling inflation even at the expense of full employment. It includes institutionalized cognitive principles, notably a deep, taken-for-granted belief in neoclassical economics.”
For privacy protection: this means YOU!
The self-responsible citizen is key to neoliberalism:
to participate in the market
to operate in accordance with market logic

This generates:
reproduction of the market
self-regulation of the market

Which results in:
self-responsibility... and the cycle repeats
... Neoliberalism (3)
Think: How much information Facebook has about its over 1 billion users?
The State:
secures private property
guarantees proper functioning of the market
creates markets
provides a framework for free markets and free trade
Cartoon from: http://lars.toomre.com/sites/lars/files/imagecache/teaser_horizontal/pictures/responsibility_cartoon.jpg
The Onion News on the CIA Deputy Chief quoted in "Terms and Conditions May Apply"
The "non-interventionist" state
...Neoliberalism, Security and Privacy
Try this:
Risk Commodificaion...
... continued
Your Profile Picture Here
Privacy and Facebook
Quotation from: R. v. Dyment 1988, see citations
Section 8
Our Privacy Rights
Image from: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawas-new-anti-terrorism-strategy-lists-eco-extremists-as-threats/article533522/
Now, Security and Privacy
Privacy Defined
Neoliberalism advocates for a non-interventionist state.

The reality is that "...actual neoliberal policies and practices involve “coercive, disciplinary forms of state intervention in order to impose market rule upon all aspects of social life"

...in the name of security.
As a result: our political lexicon as well as political imagination is shaped by security: national security, environmental security, food security, health security, financial security, transportation security, energy security, etc
Cartoon from: http://www.atthegrapevine.com/politics/state-intervention-1
Quotation from: Prck and Tickell. (See citations).
Replace “security” in the following headlines with another term:
ex. Food waste threatens shortages around the world

... this is affecting famine rates around the world

...leave the term 'out! For example: food waste threatens the globe
ex. Unemployment a dark cloud over Filipono gathering
Why global health is a national priority. Just try leaving the term out and in many cases the title will still make sense, and may be even more specific.
Three characteristics that mark the culture of fear:

1. The increase moralization of harm
2. The overwhelming emphasis on safety
3. The discouragement of even minor risks
Risk management becomes a reality of life, dealt with by security commodities
carton from: http://www.interimtechexec.com/blog/tactical-risk-on-it-projects/
Surveillance and information gathering justified through:
the "state of exception"
security discourses
This is to protect against terrorists:
islamic extremists
pro-abortion groups
aboriginal groups

1. The state in which one is not observed or disturbed by other people

2. The state of being free from public attention

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, 1982
protects from public interference (state)

Personal Information Protection and Electronic-Documents Act
Protects from private interference
does not expressly protect an individuals privacy
limits intrusion of the state
“Everyone has the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure.”
“In modern society, especially, retention of information about oneself is extremely important. We may, for one reason or another, wish or be compelled to reveal such information, but situations abound where the reasonable expectations of the individual that the information shall remain confidential to the persons to whom, and restricted to the purposes for which it is divulged, must be protected.”
Facebook collects and stores information

Users are concerned about who has access
What is the reasonable expectation of privacy on Facebook remains largely undefined
Passed in recognition of the increased ability of technology to circulate and exchange information

Rules that govern the collection, use and disclosure of personal information

Describes what type of information collection is reasonable by a corporation and what a reasonable person would consider to be appropriate information gathering under the circumstances it is collected
... PIPEDA Case Studies
From Terms and Conditions May Apply, see citations
We are Protected from:
Appropriate circumstances:
When it is required by law
To perform a disclosed action for a disclosed purpose when express consent has been granted
Inappropriate circumstances:
Unnecessary information
Information for a perceived future or current need when there is no actual need
A personal, unlisted telephone number
Personal information for a secondary purpose without express consent
Information about a person’s behavior to a third party

Image from: https://www.facebook.com/fbprivacy
Quick Task
1. The state in which one is not observed or disturbed by other people
2. The state of being free from public attention

As a quick task:
a) compare the definition of privacy with how you feel when using Facebook
b) think about your expectation of online privacy
Dessert.... I mean Cookies (but not the good type)
Examples from: Terms and Conditions May Apply, see citations
Privacy Interferences
Presentation by: Anne McKinnon
Thank you.
Quotation from: https://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=%20322194465300 see citations
Your Privacy
Photos from: http://termsandconditionsmayapply.com/category/terms-and-conditions/
No information is anonymous
Facebook has 25 employees who do nothing but surveillance
You will never know what information has been requested
ANYTHING can be searched and found on Facebook
The US website has a page that advertises for surveillance tools for sites such as Facebook
A comedian having a bad day

A grade 7 boy concerned about Obama's safety

A professor who thinks too much money was spent on the Royal Wedding
The site: https://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=%20322194465300

The app: more information is available to you on your phone
"When you sign up for Facebook you provide us with your name, email, gender, and birth date. During the registration process we give you the opportunity to provide additional profile information, such as where you went to school and where you work, and to add a picture of yourself, to help your friends connect with you. In some cases we may ask for additional information for security reasons or to provide specific services to you. Once you register you can visit your profile at any time to add or remove personal information about yourself. You can add basic information about yourself, such as information about your hometown, family, relationships, and your political and religious views. You can also add other information about yourself including your activities, interests, contact information, as well as more information about your education and job history."
Final Thoughts
Facebook Cookies:
allow web-tracking
the gathering of personal information from other sites linked to Facebook

Can result in:
targeted advertisements
junk mail
the collection and sale of personal information
Image from: http://catalog.flatworldknowledge.com/bookhub/reader/7?e=collins-ch15_s06# see citations
Understand your privacy settings
the site
the app

Take responsibility
beyond privacy settings
be informed and aware
say "no" to no privacy

Thank you for taking the time to watch this presentation.

I encourage more research into neoliberalism, capitalism and security to understand what is means for our privacy.

Citations for the presentation are available on the next slide.
Ackson, Ben. “At the Origins of Neo-Liberalism: The Free Economy and the Strong State, 1930–1947.” The Historical Journal 53.1 (2010): 129-51. Available at: http://journals2.scholarsportal.info.proxy.library.carleton.ca/details/0018246x/v53i0001/129_atoonteatss1.xml?q=neoliberalism+and+%22history%22&search_in=anywhere&date_from=&date_to=&sort=relevance&sub=

Bailey, Jane. "Framed by Section 8: Constitutional Protection of Privacy in Canada." Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice 50.3 (2008): 279-306.

Campbell, John and Ove K. Pedersen. “The Rist of Neoliberalism and Institutional Analysis.” Princeton University Press, 2001. Available at: http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/s7204.pdf

CBC News. “Food Waste Threatening Global Security.” CBC News, 2013. Available at: http://www.cbc.ca/player/Embedded-Only/News/ID/2420223960/

CBC News. “Job Security a Dark Cloud over Filipino Gathering.” CBC News, 2014.h ttp://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/job-security-a-dark-cloud-over-filipino-gathering-1.2726890

CNN. “Why Global Health Security is a National Priority.” CNN, 2014. Available at: http://www.cnn.com/2014/02/12/opinion/kerry-sebelius-health-security/index.html?iref=allsearch

Critcher, Chas. "For a Political Economy of Moral Panics." Crime, Media, Culture: An International Journal 7.3 (2011): 259-75.
Facebook. “Facebook’s Privacy Policy- Full Version.” Facebook, 2009. Available at: https://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=%20322194465300

Fagerholm, Andreas. "Towards a Lighter Shade of Red? Social Democratic Parties and the Rise of Neo-Liberalism in Western Europe, 1970–1999." Perspectives on European Politics and Society 14.4 (2013): 538-61. Available at: http://journals2.scholarsportal.info.proxy.library.carleton.ca/details/15705854/v14i0004/538_talsoroniwe1.xml?q=%22neoliberalism%22+and+%22europe%22+and+%221980s%22&search_in=anywhere&date_from=&date_to=&sort=relevance&sub=
KBOO. “Break the Chains of Neoliberalism.”Cartoon, Aristrocratic Neoliberalism (2013). Available at: http://kboo.fm/content/aristocraticneoliberalism

Lorenz, Chris. "If You'Re so Smart, Why are You Under Surveillance? Universities, Neoliberalism, and New Public Management." Critical Inquiry 38.3 (2012): 599-629. Available at: http://journals2.scholarsportal.info.proxy.library.carleton.ca/details/00931896/v38i0003/599_iysswaunanpm.xml?q=%22neoliberalism%22+and+%22surveillance%22&search_in=anywhere&date_from=&date_to=&sort=relevance&peerreviewedchk=true&sub=

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Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act, SC 2000, c 5. Available at: http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/P-8.6/index.html

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