Our Biometric Future: Facial Recognition Technology and the Culture of Surveillance

Evgeny Morozov writes:

Until last summer, hi-tech riots – broadcast on YouTube and organised by BlackBerry – were mostly the preserve of enterprising dissidents in Iran and China. But in June hordes of ice hockey fans in Vancouver, outraged by the local team’s loss to a Boston rival, filmed themselves smashing cars and burning shops. Then it happened here. The crackdowns that follow such riots are equally hi-tech. In both Britain and Canada ordinary members of the public set up Facebook groups to share pictures and videos from the riots, using Twitter to name any identified perpetrators and alert the police. This was cyber-vigilantism at its most creative.

(LRB 5 April 2012)