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[book cover] Transparent Lives

The New Transparency Project, edited by Colin J. Bennett, Kevin D. Haggerty, David Lyon, and Valerie Steeves

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April 2014

9781927356777 (Paperback)
9781927356784 (PDF)
9781927356791 (ePub)


Communication & Cultural Studies / Communication & Cultural Studies: Technology & Society / Public Policy / Sociology / Surveillance Studies

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Book Trailer


About the Book

Although most Canadians are familiar with surveillance cameras and airport security, relatively few are aware of the extent to which the potential for surveillance is now embedded in virtually every aspect of our lives. We cannot walk down a city street, register for a class, pay with a credit card, hop on an airplane, or make a telephone call without data being captured and processed. Where does such information go? Who makes use of it, and for what purpose? Is the loss of control over our personal information merely the price we pay for using social media and other forms of electronic communication, or should we be wary of systems that make us visible—and thus vulnerable—to others as never before?

The work of a multidisciplinary research team, Transparent Lives explains why and how surveillance is expanding—mostly unchecked—into every facet of our lives. Through an investigation of the major ways in which both government and private sector organizations gather, monitor, analyze, and share information about ordinary citizens, the volume identifies nine key trends in the processing of personal data that together raise urgent questions of privacy and social justice. Intended not only to inform but to make a difference, the volume is deliberately aimed at a broad audience, including legislators and policymakers, journalists, civil liberties groups, educators, and, above all, the reading public.

Watch David Lyon describe the current “Culture of Surveillance”: The new surveillance culture runs less on images and more on information.


About the Editors

The New Transparency: Surveillance and Social Sorting—a Major Collaborative Research Initiative funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada—seeks to understand the factors contributing to the expansion of surveillance as a technology of governance, including its underlying principles, technological infrastructures, and institutional frameworks, and to elucidate the social consequences of surveillance for institutions and for ordinary people. Transparent Lives reflects research conducted during the first half of this seven-year project. The volume was jointly authored by eleven members of the New Transparency team: Colin J. Bennett (University of Victoria), Andrew Clement (University of Toronto), Arthur Cockfield (Queen’s University), Aaron Doyle (Carleton University), Kevin D. Haggerty (University of Alberta), Stéphane Leman-Langlois (Université Laval), David Lyon (Queen’s University), Benjamin Muller (King’s University College, Western University), David Murakami Wood (Queen’s University), Laureen Snider (Queen’s University), and Valerie Steeves (University of Ottawa).



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Copyright: This work is licensed under a เกมส์ยิงปลาออนไลน์Creative Commons License (CC BY-NC-ND 2.5 CA). It may be reproduced for non-commercial purposes, provided that the original author is credited.


Download the entire book

Select a Chapter

DownloadFront Matter

DownloadTable of Contents



How Canadian Lives Became Transparent to Watching Eyes

DownloadTrend 1. Expanding Surveillance
From the Atypical to the Routine

DownloadTrend 2. Securitization and Surveillance
From Privacy Rights to Security Risks

DownloadTrend 3. The Blurring of Sectors
From Public Versus Private to Public with Private

DownloadTrend 4. The Growing Ambiguity of Personal Information
From Personally Identified to Personally Identifiable

DownloadTrend 5. Expanding Mobile and Location-Based Surveillance
From Who You Are to Where You Are

DownloadTrend 6. Globalizing Surveillance
From the Domestic to the Worldwide

DownloadTrend 7. Embedding Surveillance in Everyday Environments
From the Surveillance of People to the Surveillance of Things

DownloadTrend 8. Going Biometric
From Surveillance of the Body to Surveillance in the Body

DownloadTrend 9. Watching by the People
From Them to Us

What Can Be Done?

DownloadAppendix 1. Surveillance and Privacy Law: FAQs

DownloadAppendix 2. Surveillance Movies

DownloadAppendix 3. How to Protect Your Privacy Online: FAQs

DownloadAppendix 4. Canadian NGOs Concerned with Surveillance, Privacy, and Civil Liberties

DownloadAppendix 5. Further Reading

DownloadList of Contributors



“The best defences against mass surveillance, and the power citizens are relinquishing to the state and economic actors, are books such as Transparent Lives, whose mission is to raise awareness and provide concrete actionable information. It is strongly recommended to all readers with an interest in the impact of information technology on our society.”

Literary Review of Canada