This panel at the EASA (European Association of Social Anthropologists) annual conference in July 2016 addressed the issue of missing persons and unidentified bodies in various empirical contexts. Claiming that death is rather a process than a moment, papers addressed the question how such confrontations with ‚unusual‘ deaths are symbolically, socially, and politically negotiated.
Artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg creates portrait sculptures from analyses of genetic material collected in public places. Working with the traces strangers unwittingly leave behind, Dewey-Hagborg calls attention to the developing technology of forensic DNA phenotyping and the potential for a culture of biological surveillance. She will be in Berlin for an artist workshop on 18–19 August […]
The volume „Lessons from the Identity Trail. Anonymity, Privacy and Identity in a Networked Society, edited by Ian Kerr, Valerie Steeves & Carole Lucock, assembles an array of interesting articles on the various aspect of anonymity, privacy and identity. It is free to access and to download. There have been few examples of interdisciplinary dialogue […]
Sylvain Firer-Blaess: The Collective Identity of Anonymous: Web of Meanings in a Digitally Enabled Movement Ph.D. thesis at Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Informatics and Media, Media and Communication Studies. From the abstract: The present dissertation explores the collective identity of the Anonymous movement. This […]
The anthropologist Gabriella Coleman has extensively studied the social and technical background of the Anonymous online protest group, incl. her 2013 report, „Anonymous in Context: The Politics and Power behind the Mask„.
The Anonymouth text anonymization tool for texts has recently been criticized by the US critic of digital culture, Ted Byfield, in a posting on the Nettime mailing list (25 May 2016). Byfield points out that Anonymouth is closely related to stylometric projects which try to do exactly the opposite, i.e. identify anonymous authors.
„Internetkollektiv Anonymous – Digitale Spaßguerilla oder Hacker mit Moral?“ A radio feature about the Anonymous internet collective; discussing a.o. the diverging strategies of Anonymous activists, some radically opposed to state institutions, some cooperating with them. The programme was screened on the German public station Deutschlandradio Kultur, 23. 5. 2016 (in German).
The public release of the „Panama Papers“ this week by Süddeutsche Zeitung and others uncovers many names of people who tried to stay anonymous by founding offshore companies to manage part of their incomes. Despite the apparent legality of most of the procedures, one may ask why these people put so much effort into a […]
Still, everything is being done to transform the opaque and anonymous consumer into a transparent and identifiable one. Sami Coll analyses consumer surveillance and it becomes clear why anonymity has little place in it. See: Sami Coll (2016) Discipline and Reward: The Surveillance of Consumers through Loyalty Cards, Geschichte und Gesellschaft 42(1)
The Dutch media theorist Daniel de Zeeuw has published several articles and interviews on Anonymity, and the Anonymous hacker group. His MA-thesis was „One Name, One Game. Anonymous and the revenge of the object.“ He is currently working on a PhD project at the University of Amsterdam, about the politics and aesthetics of anonymity in […]