Constant Surveillance Builds a Better Identity

There are some who argue that individuality suffers under universal surveillance. When everything about you is known, and you have little or no control over how your identity is presented to others, you become just another person in a mass of similar persons. With no way to define yourself, individuality is eroded. We all become everyman and everywoman, or so the argument goes. To the contrary, the amount of detail provided to everyone around us in a transparent society helps to show all of the subtle things that define each of us as a person. If identity is in the eye of the beholder, constant surveillance builds a stronger identity. Upon meeting a perfect stranger, it is trivial to pull up a large amount of data quickly, providing us with a passing familiarity with the person before we have even exchanged words. This smooths out personal interactions, making them easier, enabling us to bypass blockades from ignorance or awkwardness. It’s not dissimilar from meeting someone that shares a mutual hobby; there’s a degree of understanding between the two people that wouldn’t exist in a vacuum.


If people know a great deal about you with a simple web search before they meet you, social interactions are smoother.

Folksonomies: social networking technology surveillance

/society (0.534915)
/law, govt and politics/espionage and intelligence/surveillance (0.518276)
/art and entertainment/movies and tv/movies (0.506535)

constant surveillance (0.947667 (positive:0.667331)), simple web search (0.895772 (positive:0.677537)), universal surveillance (0.704079 (negative:-0.855665)), social interactions (0.681333 (neutral:0.000000)), great deal (0.677829 (positive:0.677537)), similar persons (0.660853 (neutral:0.000000)), subtle things (0.660652 (positive:0.501205)), transparent society (0.659182 (positive:0.696678)), perfect stranger (0.658698 (positive:0.398981)), Better Identity (0.652199 (positive:0.677537)), personal interactions (0.639899 (neutral:0.000000)), mutual hobby (0.630556 (positive:0.547583)), stronger identity (0.628434 (positive:0.657124)), individuality (0.578911 (positive:0.231015)), people (0.500083 (positive:0.677537)), everywoman (0.482298 (neutral:0.000000)), everyman (0.473917 (positive:0.420887)), suffers (0.470928 (negative:-0.855665)), beholder (0.468431 (positive:0.509771)), familiarity (0.463854 (positive:0.441743)), ignorance (0.461729 (negative:-0.805615)), argument (0.458373 (neutral:0.000000)), control (0.450119 (negative:-0.426921)), way (0.450068 (negative:-0.527208)), mass (0.449562 (neutral:0.000000)), data (0.446043 (positive:0.553547)), vacuum (0.445377 (negative:-0.397884)), words (0.445341 (negative:-0.269470)), eye (0.445276 (positive:0.509771)), shares (0.442955 (positive:0.547583))

Constant Surveillance:Company (0.927616 (positive:0.667331)), web search:FieldTerminology (0.363957 (positive:0.677537))

Person (0.984170): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Individual (0.698853): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
People (0.698742): dbpedia | freebase
English-language films (0.668944): dbpedia
Sociology (0.591395): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Knowledge (0.578309): dbpedia | freebase
Logic (0.568922): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Privacy (0.551114): dbpedia | freebase

 Eclipse Phase - Panopticon
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Boyle , Rob and Cross, Brian (2011-06-15), Eclipse Phase - Panopticon, Retrieved on 2013-06-17
  • Source Material []
  • Folksonomies: futurism rpg