Why We Can't Have Nice Things On The Internet: A Visual Essay In One Browser Screenshot: May 14, 2017 https://mastodon.social/media/hkjth7BzjfZ8H-N0azM
This is Britain in 2017. A Britain that increasingly looks like a “managed” democracy. Paid for a US billionaire. Using military-style technology. Delivered by Facebook. And enabled by us. If we let this referendum result stand, we are giving it our implicit consent. This isn’t about Remain or Leave. It goes far beyond party politics. It’s about the first step into a brave, new, increasingly undemocratic world.
Britain had always been key to Bannon’s plans, another ex-Cambridge Analytica employee told me on condition of anonymity. It was a crucial part of his strategy for changing the entire world order.
“He believes that to change politics, you have to first change the culture. And Britain was key to that. He thought that where Britain led, America would follow. The idea of Brexit was hugely symbolically important to him.”
The company that helped Trump achieve power in the first place has now been awarded contracts in the Pentagon and the US state department. Its former vice-president Steve Bannon now sits in the White House. It is also reported to be in discussions for “military and homeland security work”.
Documents seen by the Observer show that this was a proposal to capture citizens’ browsing history en masse, recording phone conversations and applying natural language processing to the recorded voice data to construct a national police database, complete with scores for each citizen on their propensity to commit crime.
Just as Robert Mercer began his negotiations with SCL boss Alexander Nix about an acquisition, SCL was retained by several government ministers in Trinidad and Tobago. The brief involved developing a micro-targeting programme for the governing party of the time. And AggregateIQ – the same company involved in delivering Brexit for Vote Leave – was brought in to build the targeting platform.
And it was Facebook that made it possible. It was from Facebook that Cambridge Analytica obtained its vast dataset in the first place.
Facebook was the source of the psychological insights that enabled Cambridge Analytica to target individuals. It was also the mechanism that enabled them to be delivered on a large scale.
SCL/Cambridge Analytica was not some startup created by a couple of guys with a Mac PowerBook. It’s effectively part of the British defence establishment. And, now, too, the American defence establishment. An ex-commanding officer of the US Marine Corps operations centre, Chris Naler, has recently joined Iota Global, a partner of the SCL group.
It has to be understood in terms of a military contractor using military strategies on a civilian population.
Key to understanding how data would transform the company is knowing where it came from. And it’s a letter from “Director of Defence Operations, SCL Group”, that helped me realise this. It’s from “Commander Steve Tatham, PhD, MPhil, Royal Navy (rtd)” complaining about my use in my Mercer article of the word “disinformation”.
There are three strands to this story. How the foundations of an authoritarian surveillance state are being laid in the US. How British democracy was subverted through a covert, far-reaching plan of coordination enabled by a US billionaire. And how we are in the midst of a massive land grab for power by billionaires via our data. Data which is being silently amassed, harvested and stored. Whoever owns this data owns the future.
On that day in June 2013, Sophie met up with SCL’s chief executive, Alexander Nix, and gave him the germ of an idea. “She said, ‘You really need to get into data.’ She really drummed it home to Alexander. And she suggested he meet this firm that belonged to someone she knew about through her father.”
Who’s her father?
Eric Schmidt – the chairman of Google?
“Yes. And she suggested Alexander should meet this company called Palantir.”
"before we became this dark, dystopian data company... we were still just a psychological warfare firm... It was like working for MI6. Only it's MI6 for hire."
Stunning article on Robert Mercer's Cambridge Analytica, nee SCL Elections, and its deep military-industrial links.
Braun Speaker LE 1 from 1959. Designed by Dieter Rams
"LE" stood for "Lautsprechereinheit" or "Loudspeaker"
Now you know what inspired the iMac
Photo by Koichi Okuwaki
... maybe it's like those $400+ muddy jeans that one department store is selling. To mass produce low-fi versions of old remembered songs to give an artificial authenticity to them.. and then resell them to millennials inside coffee shop. #startupideas
Creative Technologist in product design, embedded prototypes: connected home, car, wearables, retail, cities. He/him. 🌈 https://linkedin.com/in/ericoesterle
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