Aral Balkan

@ekaitz_zarraga @inmysocks @amphetamine I hear you. And cool; look forward to reading it :)

@cypnk @timpera Ah, sorry, didn’t see you’d raised the GDPR issue already.

Data sharing with the US might end up as a moot point as Privacy Shield itself may (rightly) get the axe (

@cypnk Depends where you live. In the EU we have more rights than US citizens and can demand that our data is permanently deleted. (Whether or not that applies to derived data is a gray area. And without algorithmic transparency and audits, how this is enforced/policed is another gray area.) Under GDPR we’ll be gaining further rights to limit data collection/retention (same caveats as before apply). None of it is enough to properly protect us, but some good first steps.

@ekaitz_zarraga @amphetamine Haha, your English is perfectly fine but feel free to send me the link and I’m happy to skim and let you know if I find any typos ;)

Speaking at Nesta FutureFest in July

I’ll be talking about how we can move beyond surveillance capitalism in Europe to fund and create alternative ethical technological infrastructure that’s not mired in Silicon Valley’s toxic business model.

Smart Citizens, not Smart Cities

Tune in tomorrow at 14:15 CEST for the Eurocities meeting livestream to watch my keynote titled “Smart Citizens, not Smart Cities” and learn about the work we’re doing with The City of Ghent.

(And here are a few slides to whet your appetites…) ;)

Mastodon feature request: Duplicate toot (duplicates your toot into the edit area, along with any attachments and alt text for images, etc.)

Use case: to fix a typo on a toot and reissue it easily.

@danielalberto The second one is easy: mine – but it’s an instance of one so I can vouch for the admin and the lone person there ;)

First question: “jacking” doesn’t sound ethical at all. If it’s used as a consensual and explicit means of payment, perhaps.

Smart Citizens not Smart Cities

On Tuesday, I’m presenting a keynote at the Eurocities Knowledge Society Meeting in Ghent on our work with The City of Ghent in Belgium that aims to empower the citizens of Ghent with free and open, federated, and interoperable technology that they own and control.

Whenever you hear the “smart” prefix, ask “who is getting smarter about whom?”

Our work with The City of Ghent aims to enable citizens to become smarter about themselves.

@Curator @lambykun Hey, thanks for the shout out – definitely feel free to use that if you like but if I was to build it today, I would use Vue :)

Best part of this article about my talk today at (as far as I can tell from machine translations): “Resumé asked Google and Facebook for a response. Both declined.”

(Worst part: that photo. My goodness!) ;)

Our work with the City of Ghent on our Indienet project ( gets a shout out in this month’s New Scientist, in Jacob Aron’s article titled “Stop being the product.”

“On the face of it, [it] sounds a lot like the old web, where people created simple pages hosted on computers they controlled. The crucial difference is that it used to be difficult to put things online without technical know-how – which is partly why easy-to-use services like Facebook are popular.”

“Today at Facebook [art] works to create the illusion that the public sphere and the firm are one and the same. It is precisely this illusion on which surveillance capitalism depends.” – Fred Turner

This is spot on and an engrossing read on how surveillance capitalism works to legitimise itself via its aesthetics.

Via @charlyblack

Aral Balkan boosted

great #essay on how "surveillance-based for-profit media such as Facebook" are co-opting artistic narratives:

"The arts at Facebook: An aesthetic infrastructure for surveillance
by Fred Turner

The Universal Declaration of Cyborg Rights ( gets a shout out in Cosmos Magazine:

(Although the focus of the article is on the traditional/sci-fi definition of cyborg that’s limited to people with implanted technology whereas I argue that anyone who uses modern technology today is a cyborg. That distinction has important implications for personhood in the digital and networked age. See:

@avk It’s a bit far for me to attend this year with my schedule but all the best and good luck with it :)

This week, I return to the belly of the beast to present at NextM in Stockholm. Last time, in Helsinki, Google got so pissed off they demanded they not go after me in Sweden. Let’s see if they influence the content of the events they sponsor or not… ;)

@desikn What an absolute ass (Mark, that is).

(Thanks for the heads up.) :)