Asking in our classrooms – what is surveillance?

Understanding the complexities, nuances, and proliferation of surveillance technology can be difficult for students to understand.  By developing scalable surveillance technology activites, students can recognize the variety of surveillance today–including google algorithms, twitter posts, selfies, camera footage, airport security, and reality TV–prompting questions of where, why, and how these technologies can be used.  As voiced by Mark Andrejevic in Feminist Surveillance Studies, surveillance “is the coupling of information collection and use with power.  We are living in a time when information is becoming an increasingly transformative force, and power is never absent” (Andrejevic, x).  How can our teaching and classroom activities address this definition and recognize the interplay of surveillance in our daily lives?

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