Thursday, December 22, 2005

Sous-veillance vs Surveillance: Street Demonstrations

Sous-veillance (seeing from the bottom) is a term meaning the use of technologies of surveillance against the state or against those in power. Who is watching whom on New York City streets? Who is demonstrating? It's not always clear. From the NYT: "The officers hoist protest signs. They hold flowers with mourners. They ride in bicycle events. At the vigil for the cyclist, an officer in biking gear wore a button that said, "I am a shameless agitator." She also carried a camera and videotaped the roughly 15 people present.... After Mr. Browne [spokesman for the Police] was sent photographs of the people involved in the convention incidents and the bicycle arrests, he said, "I am not commenting on descriptions of purported or imagined officers."" For more on the history of conflicts over urban surveillance in NYC see the Gotham Gazette's article on the issue.


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