The Age of Surveillance Capitalism
Society is at a turning point. The heady optimism that accompanied the advent of the Internet has gone, replaced with a deep unease as technology, capitalism and an unequal society combine to create the perfect storm. Tech companies are gathering our information online and selling it to the highest bidder, whether government or retailer. In this world of surveillance capitalism, profit depends not only on predicting but modifying our online behaviour. How will this fusion of capitalism and the digital shape the values that define our future? Shoshana Zuboff shows that at this critical juncture we have a choice, the power to decide what kind of world we want to live in.
THE TOP 10 SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER
A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR
ONE OF BARACK OBAMA’S TOP BOOKS OF THE YEAR
Shortlisted for The Orwell Prize 2020
Shortlisted for the FT Business Book of the Year Award 2019
‘Easily the most important book to be published this century. I find it hard to take any young activist seriously who hasn’t at least familarised themselves with Zuboff’s central ideas.’ – Zadie Smith, The Guardian
The challenges to humanity posed by the digital future, the first detailed examination of the unprecedented form of power called “surveillance capitalism,” and the quest by powerful corporations to predict and control us.The heady optimism of the Internet’s early days is gone. Technologies that were meant to liberate us have deepened inequality and stoked divisions. Tech companies gather our information online and sell it to the highest bidder, whether government or retailer. Profits now depend not only on predicting our behaviour but modifying it too. How will this fusion of capitalism and the digital shape our values and define our future?
Shoshana Zuboff shows that we are at a crossroads. We still have the power to decide what kind of world we want to live in, and what we decide now will shape the rest of the century. Our choices: allow technology to enrich the few and impoverish the many, or harness it and distribute its benefits. The Age of Surveillance Capitalism is a deeply-reasoned examination of the threat of unprecedented power free from democratic oversight. As it explores this new capitalism’s impact on society, politics, business, and technology, it exposes the struggles that will decide both the next chapter of capitalism and the meaning of information civilization. Most critically, it shows how we can protect ourselves and our communities and ensure we are the masters of the digital rather than its slaves.
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