Matching Items (6)

Surveillance Self-Defense Mass Surveillance and the Role of Visual Communication Design

Description

Fueled by fear in the post-9/11 United States, American intelligence agencies conduct dragnet data collection on global communication. Despite the intention of surveillance as preventative counter-terrorism action, the default search

Fueled by fear in the post-9/11 United States, American intelligence agencies conduct dragnet data collection on global communication. Despite the intention of surveillance as preventative counter-terrorism action, the default search and seizure of global communication poses a threat to our constitutional rights and individual autonomy. This is the case especially for people who may be thought of as in opposition to our current political climate, such as immigrants, people of color, women, people practicing non-western religions, people living outside of the United States, activists, persons engaging in political dissent, and people with intersecting identities. Throughout the Fall and Spring semesters, I have done research, conducted visual experiments and designed exploratory projects in order to more thoroughly identify the issue and explore the ways in which visual communication design can aid in the conversation surrounding global surveillance. It was the intention of my fourth year social issue projects to explore the role of visual communication design in the dialogue surrounding surveillance, principally focusing on the responsibility visual communication design has in spreading ideas about how to globally subvert surveillance until governments disclose information about their unconstitutional actions or until whistleblowers do it for them. My final project, the fourth year social issue exhibit, focuses on how improving our personal password habits can help us gain agency in digital spaces. Using the randomness of rolling a dice to generate entropy can help us generate stronger passwords in order to secure sensitive information online. Using design as a method of communication, my fourth year social issue exhibit shared information about how encrypted passwords can act as the first line of defense in protecting ourselves from invasive data collection and malicious internet activity.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017-05

Understanding Post-Occupy Police Surveillance of Activists

Description

While police surveillance of political protestors is not a new phenomenon, the use of social media platforms as surveillance tools by various law enforcement agencies is rising in popularity and

While police surveillance of political protestors is not a new phenomenon, the use of social media platforms as surveillance tools by various law enforcement agencies is rising in popularity and functions to identify and track activists merely engaging in their protected right to protest. Although troublesome, these tactics can be subverted by individuals who wish to protect their privacy while still exercising their right to organize politically.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015-05

133122-Thumbnail Image.png

Fear of A Black Messiah: the FBI's Campaign to Delegitimate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. from 1962-1968

Description

From 1962-1968, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was the target of an FBI surveillance campaign, led by then-director, J. Edgar Hoover. The FBI claimed that this campaign was necessary, to

From 1962-1968, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was the target of an FBI surveillance campaign, led by then-director, J. Edgar Hoover. The FBI claimed that this campaign was necessary, to expose the communist influence within the civil rights movement, but this was a lie. I argue that, instead, the purpose of the surveillance was so that the Bureau could attempt to ruin Dr. King's reputation by collecting incriminating evidence about his personal life. I believe that the Bureau embarked on this campaign against Dr. King in order to maintain the United States' white supremacist racial hierarchy by neutralizing a prominent black activist. Further, I believe that today, there is the potential for the FBI to take. In order to argue this, I analyze different aspects of the Bureau's campaign against Dr. King. First, I discuss Hoover's fascination with and hatred of Dr. King. Throughout the six years this thesis focuses on, Hoover repeatedly took actions against King that went far beyond what was necessary or appropriate for an anti-Communism campaign. I argue that this is because Hoover's true goal was to damage King's reputation as much as possible, not discover if he was a communist. Second, I examine the Bureau's surveillance of Stanley Levison, one of King's closest aides. Levison was, for a time, a suspected communist. This gave the Bureau's campaign some initial legitimacy, and eventually led to the Bureau's official spy campaign against Dr. King. Next, I analyze the FBI's use of technological surveillance methods against King. The Bureau's patterns of microphone and wiretap use in their campaign against King further suggest that the intent of such actions was merely to gather information to injure King's reputation with the public. Fourth, I discuss the Bureau's use of informants to keep tabs on King's actions and plan. More specifically, I discuss Ernest Columbus Withers, a black photographer who served as an FBI informant. Finally, I argue that there is potential for the FBI to take similar actions against today's black activists. To make this point, I analyze the wording of an FBI memo made public last year. In this memo, the FBI warns of a domestic terror threat known as "Black Identity Extremists." I argue that the FBI's definition of these extremists is purposely vague, and could feasibly be applied to any black activist. Because of this, I believe there is potential for modern activists to be subjected to the same kind of harassment Dr. King endured in the 1960's. Those who cannot remember the past are doomed to repeat it, and this thesis serves as a reminder that there are forces who would stifle the First Amendment to maintain the status quo.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018-12

155238-Thumbnail Image.png

The rhetoric of surveillance in post-Snowden background investigation policy reform

Description

In June 2013, United States (US) government contractor Edward Snowden arranged for journalists at The Guardian to release classified information detailing US government surveillance programs. While this release caused the

In June 2013, United States (US) government contractor Edward Snowden arranged for journalists at The Guardian to release classified information detailing US government surveillance programs. While this release caused the public to decry the scope and privacy concerns of these surveillance systems, Snowden's actions also caused the US Congress to critique how Snowden got a security clearance allowing him access to sensitive information in the first place. Using Snowden's actions as a kairotic moment, this study examined congressional policy documents through a qualitative content analysis to identify what Congress suggested could “fix” in the background investigation (BI) process. The study then looked at the same documents to problematize these “solutions” through the terministic screen of surveillance studies.

By doing this interdisciplinary rhetorical analysis, the study showed that while Congress encouraged more oversight, standardization, and monitoring for selected steps of the BI process, these suggestions are not neutral solutions without larger implications; they are value-laden choices which have consequences for matters of both national security and social justice. Further, this study illustrates the value of incorporating surveillance as framework in rhetoric, composition, and professional/technical communication research.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

150555-Thumbnail Image.png

Modeling frameworks for supply chain analytics

Description

Supply chains are increasingly complex as companies branch out into newer products and markets. In many cases, multiple products with moderate differences in performance and price compete for the same

Supply chains are increasingly complex as companies branch out into newer products and markets. In many cases, multiple products with moderate differences in performance and price compete for the same unit of demand. Simultaneous occurrences of multiple scenarios (competitive, disruptive, regulatory, economic, etc.), coupled with business decisions (pricing, product introduction, etc.) can drastically change demand structures within a short period of time. Furthermore, product obsolescence and cannibalization are real concerns due to short product life cycles. Analytical tools that can handle this complexity are important to quantify the impact of business scenarios/decisions on supply chain performance. Traditional analysis methods struggle in this environment of large, complex datasets with hundreds of features becoming the norm in supply chains. We present an empirical analysis framework termed Scenario Trees that provides a novel representation for impulse and delayed scenario events and a direction for modeling multivariate constrained responses. Amongst potential learners, supervised learners and feature extraction strategies based on tree-based ensembles are employed to extract the most impactful scenarios and predict their outcome on metrics at different product hierarchies. These models are able to provide accurate predictions in modeling environments characterized by incomplete datasets due to product substitution, missing values, outliers, redundant features, mixed variables and nonlinear interaction effects. Graphical model summaries are generated to aid model understanding. Models in complex environments benefit from feature selection methods that extract non-redundant feature subsets from the data. Additional model simplification can be achieved by extracting specific levels/values that contribute to variable importance. We propose and evaluate new analytical methods to address this problem of feature value selection and study their comparative performance using simulated datasets. We show that supply chain surveillance can be structured as a feature value selection problem. For situations such as new product introduction, a bottom-up approach to scenario analysis is designed using an agent-based simulation and data mining framework. This simulation engine envelopes utility theory, discrete choice models and diffusion theory and acts as a test bed for enacting different business scenarios. We demonstrate the use of machine learning algorithms to analyze scenarios and generate graphical summaries to aid decision making.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

151210-Thumbnail Image.png

Does the Supreme Court know what's best for us?: potential mediators of public support for three surveillance techniques

Description

Very little experimental work has been done to investigate the psychological underpinnings of perceptions of privacy. This issue is especially pressing with the advent of powerful and inexpensive technologies that

Very little experimental work has been done to investigate the psychological underpinnings of perceptions of privacy. This issue is especially pressing with the advent of powerful and inexpensive technologies that allow access to all but our most private thoughts -and these too are at risk (Farah, Smith, Gawuga, Lindsell, &Foster;, 2009). Recently the Supreme Court ruled that the use of a global positioning system (GPS) device to covertly follow a criminal suspect, without first obtaining a search warrant, is a violation of a suspect's fourth amendment right to protection from unlawful search and seizure (United States v. Jones, 2012). However, the Court has also ruled in the past that a law enforcement officer can covertly follow a suspect's vehicle and collect the same information without a search warrant and this is not considered a violation of the suspect's rights (Katz v. United States). In the case of GPS surveillance the Supreme Court Justices did not agree on whether the GPS device constituted a trespassing violation because it was placed on the suspect's vehicle (the majority) or if it violated a person's reasonable expectation of privacy. This incongruence is an example of how the absence of a clear and predictable model of privacy makes it difficult for even the country's highest moral authority to articulate when and why privacy has been violated. This research investigated whether public perceptions of support for the use of each surveillance technique also vary across different monitoring types that collect the same information and whether these differences are mediated by similar factors as argued by the Supreme Court. Results suggest that under some circumstances participants do demonstrate differential support and this is mediated by a general privacy concern. However, under other circumstances differential support is the result of an interaction between the type of monitoring and its cost to employ -not simply type; this differential support was mediated by both perceived violations of private-space and general privacy. Results are discussed in terms of how these findings might contribute to understanding the psychological foundation of perceived privacy violations and how they might inform policy decision.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012