New Technologies, Surveillance and Human Rights

Dr. Wellington Almeida

Many recent elections around the world were impacted by intensive use of the new technologies, which is crucial for the improvement of the "fake news" and post-truth narrative. Beyond this point, we have a more strongly challenge concerning "artificial intelligence" or Machine Learning System. Those systems are "developed" by example (data) to create models that change our behaviour and improve their performance when are aggregating more and more data.

Personal data available in social networks are a source for models that analyse feelings, political intention and can permit manipulation of the public opinion. They are systems, which organise the control and surveillance in all direction and are essential for the new reconfiguration of capitalism and power. This paper intends to discuss two hypotheses developed by ZUBOFF (2019): a) The surveillance is a movement that aims to impose a new collective order based on total certainly; b) Its an expropriation of critical human rights that is best understood as a coup from above: an overthrow of the people's sovereignty.

The drive is the arguments of Zuboof and other approaches like Frischmann & Selinger (2018) and Susskind (2018). Zuboff describes and the relationship between these new technologies and the capitalist reconfiguration in this century. Its concept of surveillance capitalism inaugurates a new debate, starting from the problematization of themes such as the use of the so-called algorithms for a new strategy of this economic order. The daily surveillance of all kinds of human experiences occupies a prominent place. It is a new phase of concentration of knowledge of wealth and power unprecedented in history.
The fundamental framework of this surveillance economy exploits human behaviour, threatening the autonomy of social groupings, using an instrumentalist power and control capable of threatening democratic sovereignty.

For Frischmann & Selinger the most important constitutional question of this century will be how to guarantee the right of people to exercise the freedom to live out of control by techno-social engineering, ensuring autonomy to develop free from technological determinism. This trend, Susskind notes, is one of unchecked advancement in the technologies that are filtering what we can see from the world, prescribing what we know, and shaping the way we think. Those who control this technology can increase control over others.