Note — Jan 27, 2019

Is Big Tech Merging With Big Brother?

Follow the Zuboff interview with this one, on the ever tighter link between big tech and government. Amazon in particular seems in very good and scary position. Frankly, I’m always a bit astonished that acronym agencies outsource to the cloud.

This made Amazon the sole provider of cloud services across “the full range of data classifications, including Unclassified, Sensitive, Secret, and Top Secret,” according to an Amazon corporate press release. […]

Last year the agency moved most of its data into a new classified computing environment known as the Intelligence Community GovCloud, an integrated “big data fusion environment,” as the news site NextGov described it, that allows government analysts to “connect the dots” across all available data sources, whether classified or not. […]

With so many pots of gold waiting at the end of the Washington, DC, rainbow, it seems like a small matter for tech companies to turn over our personal data—which legally speaking, is actually their data—to the spy agencies that guarantee their profits. This is the threat that is now emerging in plain sight. It is something we should reckon with now, before it’s too late. […]

A set of key social functions—communicating ideas and information [media]—has been transferred from one set of companies, operating under one set of laws and values, to another, much more powerful set of companies, which operate under different laws and understand themselves in a different way. […]