onsdag 2. mai 2018


Over the past two decades, the Chinese government has established what is perhaps the world’s most sophisticated and advanced system to control and filter online information and public opinion. Thanks to the relentless work of activists, journalists, and academic researchers to expose propaganda and censorship mechanisms employed by the authorities in China, including the Great Firewall, these aspects of its information control technology are well-known to the international community. However, the Chinese government is now going beyond simply deleting online content and blocking foreign websites to leverage the Internet and other emerging digital technologies as powerful tools for monitoring and controlling society, particularly through big data collection, artificial intelligence (AI), and the Internet of Things.

While the uses of data collection are many, there are significant risks that big data can be used to further empower ruling elites. When coupled with AI, big data enables the prediction—and thereby manipulation—of human responses and future behavior. Furthermore, big data can identify varying penalties for “different” or non-conforming behaviors. This “totalitarian dataveillance” makes it possible for government control over society to become far more effective than before.