New Double Issue of Surveillance & Society

I’m very pleased to have got a new double issue of Surveillance & Society out. This one really benefitted from the great work of our new Editorial Assistant, Sarah Cheung, and our new Debates Editor, Laura Huey. It also marked the end of the tenure of Kevin Haggerty as our Book Review Editor, which is sad, but it will mean that we have two new Book Review Editors for the Americas and for Europe (+ the rest of the world): Ben Goold and Chiara Fonio.

Anyway, content…


Katherine Barnard-Wills & David Barnard-Wills – Invisible Surveillance in Visual Art

Tina Girishbhai Patel – Surveillance, Suspicion and Stigma: Brown Bodies in a Terror-Panic Climate

Joshua Reeves – If You See Something, Say Something: Lateral Surveillance and the Recession of Sovereignty

Doug Tewksbury – Crowdsourcing Homeland Security: The Texas Virtual BorderWatch and Participatory Citizenship

Catherine Luther and Ivanka Radovic – Perspectives on Privacy, Information Technology, and Company/Governmental Surveillance in Japan

Christel Backman – Mandatory Criminal Record Checks in Sweden: Scandals and Function Creep

Clemence Due, Kathleen Connellan and Damien W Riggs – Surveillance, Security and Violence in a Mental Health Ward: An Ethnographic Case-Study of a Purpose-Built Unit in Australia

Andrew Manley, Catherine Palmer and Martin Roderick – Disciplinary Power, the Oligopticon and Rhizomatic Surveillance in Elite Sports Academies

Michele (Michal) Rapoport – The Home Under Surveillance: A Tripartite Assemblage

Debate: Privacy Online

featuring Laura Huey, Micheal Vonn, Reg Whitaker, Paul Rosenzweig, danah boyd, Steve T. Margulis, and Gary T. Marx, and Judith Rauhofer

+ reviews of Ball, Haggerty and Lyon’s Handbook of Surveillance Studies, Bruno, Kanashiro and Firmino’s Vigilância e Visibilidade: Espaço, tecnología e identificação and Braverman’s Zooland: The Institution of Captivity

Check it Out!

Surveillance and Empowerment

I’ve just spent my Saturday getting the new issue of Surveillance & Society out…

8(2): Surveillance and Empowerment

edited by Torin Monahan, David J. Phillips and David Murakami Wood

  • James P Walsh – From Border Control to Border Care: The Political and Ethical Potential of Surveillance.
  • Katie Shilton – Participatory Sensing: Building Empowering Surveillance
  • Priscilla M Regan and Valerie Steeves – Kids R Us: Online Social Networking and the Potential for Empowerment
  • Dean Wilson and Tanya Serisier – Video Activism and the ambiguities of counter-surveillance
  • Marko M Skoric, Jia Ping Esther Chua, Meiyan Angeline Liew, Keng Hui Wong, and Pei Jue Yeo – Online Shaming in the Asian Context: Community Empowerment or Civic Vigilantism?
  • Ariane Ellerbrok – Empowerment: Analyzing Technologies of Multiple Variable Visibility
  • Gwen Ottinger – Constructing Empowerment through Interpretations of Environmental Surveillance Data
  • Anders Albrechtslund and Louise Nørgaard Glud – Empowering Residents: A Theoretical Framework for Negotiating Surveillance Technologies

+ all the usual book reviews

Coming soon: our forthcoming issues on ‘Surveillance, Marketing and Consumption’, and our ‘Global Surveillance Society?’ Conference specials.

Surveillance & Society | the international journal of surveillance studies

Voluntary Self-Surveillance

In a nice bit of synchronicity with the ‘Surveillance and Empowerment’ call just issued by Surveillance & Society, there’s a really interesting little piece on the rise of ‘self-tracking’ by Curetogether founder, Alexandra Carmichael, in the latest issue of h+ magazine, an open-access publication from ‘transhumanist’ pioneer, R.U. Sirius.

The piece concentrates on those who have health problems who want to track and share symptoms and other biometric data, but argues that this is a wider interest: “we do it because we love data, or we do it because we have specific things we want to optimize about ourselves.”

There are also some useful links to life-logging and patient data-sharing sites.

(thanks to BoingBoing for the link to h+)

Call for Papers: Surveillance and Empowerment

Special Issue of Surveillance & Society: Issue 8(3)
Guest editors: Torin Monahan, David Murakami Wood, and David J. Phillips

Publication date: end of October 2010
Deadline for submissions: March 31st 2010

This issue of Surveillance & Society is seeking papers and other submissions that examine the social implications of contemporary surveillance with a particular interest in the complexities of empowerment. In the surveillance studies literature, there have been significant contributions unsocial sorting, digital discrimination, privacy invasion, racial profiling, sexual harassment, and other mechanisms of unequal treatment. In contradistinction, this issue seeks to explore the potential of surveillance for individual autonomy and dignity, fairness and due process, community cooperation and empowerment, and social equality. Key to this inquiry will be questioning the extent to which surveillance can be designed, employed, and regulated to contribute to democratic practices and/or the social good.

The very framing of the issue in terms of “surveillance and empowerment” begs the question of empowerment for whom and for what purposes. Thus, we invite critical attention to the ways in which surveillance practices may unfairly embody advantages for some groups over others and to explore alternatives. Possible research areas might include (but are not limited to):

  • Surveillance and human security
  • Surveillance and well-being / flourishing
  • Surveillance for safety
  • Ethical surveillance infrastructures and systems, e.g. ubiquitous computing environments that provide care for the vulnerable, dependent and elderly
  • Surveillance for sustainability, environmental management and environmental justice Surveillance of energy and resource consumption
  • Social networking tools employed by social movements
  • Surveillance of corporations, government agencies, or political parties by watchdog groups
  • Policies for ensuring privacy, accountability, and transparency with video or other surveillance systems
  • Surveillance in post-authoritarian societies – toward restrictions and counters to the unleashed surveillance of former regimes

We welcome full academic papers, opinion pieces, review pieces, poetry, artistic, and audio-visual submissions. Submissions will undergo a peer-review and revision process prior to publication. Submissions should be original work, neither previously published nor under consideration for publication elsewhere. All references to previous work by contributors should be masked in the text (e.g., “Author, 2009”).

All papers must be submitted through the online submission system no later than March 31st 2010, for publication at the end of October 2010. Please use submit the papers in a MSWord-compatible format. For further submission guidelines, please see:

For all inquiries regarding the issue, please contact:

For other current calls (including Issue 8(2) Surveillance, Consumers and Consumption) and announcements, please see:

New Issue of Surveillance & Society

NEW ISSUE: Volume 7 Number 1 (Open Issue)

  • Keith Guzik – Discrimination by Design: Data Mining in the United States’s ‘War on Terrorism’
  • Shelly Ikebuchi Ketchell – Carceral Ambivalence: Japanese Canadian ‘Internment’ and the Sugar Beet Programme during World War II
  • Nicholas Holm – Watching the Paranoid: Conspiracy Theorizing Surveillance
  • Christopher Gad & Peter Lauritsen – Situated Surveillance: an ethnographic study of fisheries inspection in Denmark
  • Patrick O’Byrne & Dave Holmes – Public Health STI/HIV Surveillance: Exploring the Society of Control
  • A video piece by Jan J Knoetze, Brent Meistre – Interrogating Surveillance: The 50 Minute Hour
  • Responses to previous articles by Sean P. Hier & Josh Greenberg and David Murakami Wood
  • and Book Reviews by Rodrigo Jose Firmino & Fabio Duarte, Ariane Ellerbrok, Patrick Feng, Jason Pridmore and Tarangini Sriraman