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"Total DisInformation Awareness"
Conflict, Control and Freedom of Information

A new security paradigm overshadows the world of technology and communication. As conflict is increasingly being shifted to the infosphere- with Homeland Security Alerts for the terminally overinformed- the new conflicts of the DisInformation Society are not so much about blood and steel but the psychological positioning of ideas and the creation of adversaries. Communications technology becomes a carrier for media PR and psychological "truth projection" operations where truth maintenance is a socio-technical engineering challenge.

The skies are filled with a dense veil of electronic eyes, ears and transponders with the aim of a multiple redundant sphere of "information awareness". With the US DoD set to integrate, broaden, and automate these current approaches, interfaced information systems are installed with the hope to counter asymmetric threats by achieving "total information awareness useful for preemption; national security warning; and national security decision making".

Paranoia has become a business model for the security and media industry and supports a climate for political influence based on an assertion of identity. The paranoid energy can be manifested as consumer sales which increase personal feelings of security through spending or panic cohesion instrumentalized for "national interests".

Terror as a psychological phenomenon has entered the Information Age where everyone becomes a suspect in a world of self-learning algorithms that police the population into following the norm. While it becomes undesirable to be creating attention by deviant behavioral patterns, the trade-off in exchanging freedom of thought, association, movement and speech for security is questionable in many ways. A statistical in/significance is turned into a general lifestyle and ideology, where automated databases rule the land.

Military conflict management has always been a driving force in the development of ICT and is increasingly based on advanced electronic command and control systems. But now society at large is drawn into conflicts concerning the distribution of wealth in access and content. In regard to Intellectual Property, labor and culture, information vs. disinformation becomes a question of intelligence in public interest research.

How can transparency of the control of information flows and production be promoted rather than an opaque system of unaccountable information dominance?

How can it be assured that the public interest is represented in a balanced way?

A new Information Culture needs to acquire total awareness of the structures and effects of information flows and their processes.

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