sousveillance and oligopticons

Dodge, Martin, and Rob Kitchin. 2007. “‘Outlines of a world coming into existence’: pervasive computing and the ethics of forgetting.” Environment and Planning B-Planning & Design 34, no. 3: 431-45.

Abstract: In this paper we examine the potential of pervasive computing to create widespread sousveillance, which will complement surveillance, through the development of life-logs—sociospatial archives that document every action, every event, every conversation, and every material expression of an individual’s life. Reflecting on emerging technologies, life-log projects, and artistic critiques of sousveillance, we explore the potential social, political, and ethical implications of machines that never forget. We suggest, given that life-logs have the potential to convert exterior generated oligopticons to an interior panopticon, that an ethics of forgetting needs to be developed and built into the development of life-logging technologies. Rather than seeing forgetting as a weakness or a fallibility, we argue that it is an emancipatory process that will free pervasive computing from burdensome and pernicious disciplinary effects.

I’m happy to find this article because I’ve been saying this about forgetting for a while now, but had nothing to point at.

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