Corporate surveillance, the monitoring of a person or a group of people collecting data on others, is in our everyday life. Sometimes we are aware of it but do not really pay attention or care about it until it becomes a bit too much. Should corporate surveillance be allowed?
Learning more about corporate surveillance is important because consumers should be aware that it crosses the line between sharing basic information and invading their privacy. Understanding the concept of corporate surveillance might make people be more careful while visiting some sites or some places. In the world in general 61.2% uses smartphones, and in America, 88% of people use social media. So, we are talking about a tremendous amount of people that are ignorant of their privacy being violated. Although corporate surveillance can benefit in many ways, it should not be allowed.
The definition of privacy has now shifted. Now companies do not care about people wanted to stay discreet about their personal information. This is based on the article Selfie Culture in the Age of Corporate and State Surveillance, written by Henry A. Giroux .“ The author argues that the selfie is not just another fad deeply enmeshed in popular culture. On the contrary, selfies are less about entertainment and vanity than they are symptomatic of a retreat from privacy rights, an intense site for the commodification of the self, and a veritable resource for the surveillance state and its national intelligence agencies such as the National Security Agency.” Basically, the author is saying that corporate surveillance is so developed that even by taking selfies companies have information about consumers that should have remained private. Social media is not only about entertainment, it also puts people’s privacy at risk. The “ selfie culture” is now a political problem which people should be aware of and protect themselves from.
Companies now know more about us than we do about ourselves because they keep on spying on us. It is based on “ The New Tech Totalitarian “ written by John Gray. “ “Connected cars” could monitor drivers and lock down a vehicle if users fell behind in their payments for it. Other schemes have proposed that individuals’ health be monitored by “wearable accelerometers”, which would “improve traceability of their compliance” with dietary and medication schedules. As the “internet of things” advances, car dashboards, refrigerators, thermostats, spectacles, and watches will become platforms for advertising. Location data collected from smartphones already record how people travel and shape where and what they consume.” This shows that it benefits companies to spy on consumers because if a consumer tries to steal or is doing something illegal they can easily track him. The same thing applies to criminals, the government can use this information to track a criminal which benefits everyone in this case. In this case, it is acceptable. But there are always two sides to a subject. It does not benefit so much consumers because their privacy has been violated. They should be able to have a say in companies and the government spying on them.
Before it was harder for companies to know about people’s personal information unless the person gave it to them. Now everything had changed, gained more capacity to do collect data. According to “ Privacy Under Capitalism” written by Jacob Silverman, it states, “With the proliferation of networked devices in our homes and on our bodies, our surrounding environments now overflow with sensors and other data producers. Earlier generations saw some forms of governmental and commercial data collection about the home and what goes on in it. Market research, census records, consumer surveys, loyalty cards, credit bureaus, property records—these were common pre-digital data streams, and many still exist in one form or another.” This evidence highlights the fact that compared to the previous generation, now they know everything about us. They have the ability to know your location, activities, who you talk to, what type of music you listen to, etc… Unlike before people had to fill in papers or surveys for companies to know their preferences. Now everything is easier for them because of the increase of devices that we use all the time. It is totally not safe to use our electronic devices because companies always have access to it and it’s easy to spy on us.
However, corporate surveillance has some benefits. Benefits like machines helping you or companies sending you coupons once you apply on one of their sites. It is based on “ Fast Companies” written by Heather Woods from Amazon. “First, smart devices offer exceptional convenience at an unprecedentedly low cost …This isn’t new. Wealthier people have long relied on the labor of others to manage their households and workspaces. Smart home technologies promise similar effects. They can automate chores, including vacuuming, grocery shopping, and even cooking.”Smart devices have been invented to help people in their everyday tasks. These devices even though the companies have access to their customer’s personal information, it is very beneficial for people with special needs. They won’t have to do some home tasks themselves, they could just tell the smart device to. The disadvantage is that like I mentioned the companies will have access to your personal information, like what you tell the device to do or are your preference, more information than what you want them to know about you.
As long as we recognize its advantages, we still have to keep in mind its multiples disadvantage. Companies spying on us as an impact. It is based on “ The Best Of The Left”. According to Best of the left, politicians and some companies use social media like Facebook to target particular groups of people. Its shows that the government and companies are constantly spying on people. They have people’s data and information.
I was not sure about either if corporate surveillance was negative or not. Now I am definitely against it. I believe everyone should have the right to be fully informed about the information collected from them. Do people really care? Are people trying to make changes when aware? People should do more about the situation.