The Circle of HOPE (2018): "Networked Authoritarianism" (Download)
Sunday, July 22, 2018: 3:00 pm (Booth): Nearly two years into the Trump administration, it’s practically a cliche of Twitter gallows humor to quip that the day’s bonkers headlines are the result of a Marvel-esque plot twist that has transported us into a parallel universe. But of course, powerful forces have been laying the groundwork for a long time. Networked authoritarianism is a political system that leverages information and communications technologies (ICTs) and media regulation to carefully control the expression of dissent in a way that gives the impression of limited freedom of expression without allowing dissent to gain traction. Networked authoritarianism combines strategies and tactics from the surveillance capitalism of Silicon Valley and from the information controls practiced by illiberal regimes around the world to create strategic infrastructures to control information flows domestically and to intervene in global media systems. The democratic regression and rise of ethno-nationalism around the world is directly linked to networked authoritarianism. How did we get to this point, and how do we fight back?