Close this message. Author: Alfredo Saad Filho. Value and Crisis brings together selected essays written by Alfredo Saad-Filho, one of the most prominent Marxist political economists today. This book examines the labour theory of value from a rich and innovative perspective, from which fresh insights and new perspectives are derived, with applications for the nature of neoliberalism, financialisation, inflation, monetary policy, and the contradictions, limitations and crises of contemporary capitalism.
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The birth of Klinika
Contents About. Free access. By: Alfredo Saad-Filho. Restricted Access. Pages: 13— Certainly it can be disconcerting when you search for information about a product category, and then notice that ads for companies selling that product are following you around the internet for several hours or even days.
Many people find this exploitative, dishonest, creepy, and intrusive.
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An important test of that is whether consumers want it. It is patronising and simply wrong to say that the population as a whole does not know what is going on. Erik Brynjolffson, a professor of economics at MIT, ran a survey in to assess how much Americans would have to be paid to avoid using the products provided for free by the tech giants. Duck Duck Go is by all accounts a pretty good substitute for Google Search, and sells itself on not using your data.
I have never used Facebook, not because of privacy concerns, but because I reckon I would spend too much time looking at cat videos. It is trying to figure out what makes me and a thousand other people like me choose to buy a particular type of car and when, and then sell that information to a firm that sells cars.
The data about me is useless unless combined in that way, and it is data that I could not possibly sell on my own. Capitalists just want to sell us fizzy black water and cars.
Governments provide security and a welfare safety net, but in order to do this they lay claim to between a third and a half of our income, they send some of us to war, and they lock some of us up. It seems that many Chinese are intensely relaxed about Social Credit: they say it improves public behaviour, and they argue that there is nothing to worry about if you have done nothing wrong. This is a very poor argument.
State surveillance leads to self-censorship, and if the levers of state power fall into malign hands — which from time to time they do — then a powerful surveillance network becomes a disaster for everyone. The real problem with the tech giants in the eyes of many of their critics is they are too big, too powerful, and above all, they make too much profit.
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And profit is a Bad Thing. This may not be not true of Zuboff, who declares herself a fan of good old-fashioned capitalism, but it is certainly true of Jeremy Corbyn and Bernie Sanders. Corbyn and Sanders are just as populist as the alt-right, and just as dangerous. They are willfully ignorant of the huge benefits delivered by modern capitalism, and they seek to wreck it.
In attacking the tech giants for spreading fake news they are surely missing the most egregious culprits. The data being hoovered up and exploited by the tech giants today is mostly about our shopping habits. We are on the verge of an era when we will generate tsunamis of data about our health. Apple Watches are showing the way, and before long most of us will wear devices which take readings of our pulse, our sweat, our eye fluids, our electrical impulses, analyse some of it on the device and stream more of it to the cloud.
When a megadeath is priced in the mere hundreds of dollars, can we avoid the universal panopticon?
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Calum Chace, columnist, is an author and speaker on artificial intelligence. Calum writes about how, in the course of this century, AI will change pretty much everything Share to facebook Share to twitter Share to linkedin. Calum Chace.
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