Archiv der Kategorie: english

Blockchain For Dummies

[German Version] The ‚blockchain‘ is currently being praised as a new miracle technology. The word appears six times in the German coalition agreement for the new government – and always in the context of new and promising digital technologies. But what is behind all this? Blockchain technology was born with its first popular application: Bitcoin. Bitcoin is based on the fact that all transactions made with the digital currency are recorded in a kind of ledger. However, this ledger is not located in a central registry, but on the computers of all Bitcoin users. Everyone has an identical copy. And whenever a transaction happens, it is recorded more or less simultaneously in all these copies. It is only when most of the ledgers have written down the transaction that it is considered completed. Each transaction is cryptographically linked to the preceding transactions so that their validity is verifiable for all. For instance, if someone inserts a fake transaction in between, the calculations are no longer valid and the system raises an alarm. What we’ve got, is a storage technology that no individual can control or manipulate. Early on, even bitcoin skeptics admitted that besides the digital currency itself, it is … Weiterlesen

Veröffentlicht unter Algorithmenkritik english extern Plattformpolitik Weltkontrollverlust
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What Is Platform Politics? Foundations of a New Form of Political Power

/**** First published in ‘Zeitschrift für sozialistische Politik und Wirtschaft’ (SPW), S. 44 – 49. in December 2017. ****/ [PDF] [German Original] In early 2017, shortly after the inauguration of Donald Trump, the rumor began to spread that Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg himself was planning to enter the presidential race in 2020. Following Trump’s victory, everything may seem possible, but this speculation was based solely on the so-called “Listening Tour”, Zuckerberg’s trip through the US, where he wanted to meet Facebook users in person.1 This rumor is only a symptom of the general lack of understanding of our times. For Mark Zuckerberg has long been a politician. He has an enormous impact on the daily lives of two billion people. He makes decisions that affect how these people get together, how they interact, even how they see the world. So Zuckerberg is already perhaps the most powerful politician in the world. Any job in traditional politics, including the office of US president, would be a step down. In this text, I will try to determine and analyze the ways in which platforms act politically, examining how they organize their power base and in which fields their policies are already changing … Weiterlesen

Veröffentlicht unter Das Neue Spiel english extern Kontrollverlust Plattformpolitik
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Digital Tribalism – The Real Story About Fake News

Text by: Michael Seemann / Data Visualization by: Michael Kreil [Download as PDF] [(original) German Version] The Internet has always been my dream of freedom. By this I mean not only the freedom of communication and information, but also the hope for a new freedom of social relations. Despite all the social mobility of modern society, social relations are still somewhat constricting today. From kindergarten to school, from the club to the workplace, we are constantly fed through organizational forms that categorize, sort and thereby de-individualize us. From grassroots groups to citizenship, the whole of society is organized like a group game, and we are rarely allowed to choose our fellow players. It’s always like, „Find your place, settle down, be a part of us.“ The Internet seemed to me to be a way out. If every human being can relate directly to every other, as my naive-utopian thought went, then there would no longer be any need for communalized structures. Individuals could finally counteract as peers and organize themselves. Communities would emerge as a result of individual relationships, rather than the other way around. Ideally, there would no longer be any structures at all beyond the customized, self-determined network … Weiterlesen

Veröffentlicht unter Das Neue Spiel Digital Tribalism english Weltkontrollverlust
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open!: The Kontrollverlust of the Nation-State and the Rise of the Platforms

/**** In letzter Zeit bekomme ich vermehrt Anfragen für Texte auf Englisch. Das macht mir zwar mehr Mühe, da ich nicht so erfahren bin, in dieser Sprache zu schreiben. Aber ich denke, es lohnt sich allein des anderen Leserkreises wegen. Hier ein Text, den ich für die Plattform „open!“ geschrieben habe. Es geht nur am Anfang einführend um den Kontrollverlust, der Hauptteil des Textes setzt sich mit der Politik von Plattformen auseinander. Eine kürzere Version einiger der Gedanken und Beispielen aus dem Text kann man auch auf Deutsch bei der Zeitschrift „Kunst und Kommerz“ des deutschen Kulturrates nachlesen. (Hier das PDF) ****/ The Kontrollverlust of the Nation-State and the Rise of the Platforms Since Wikileaks revealed large amounts of US intelligence to the public in 2010, most people are now more aware of the vulnerability of the nation-state: that it must keep it’s secrets safe in order to function. (At least, this is what the nation-state believes.) But as technology evolves, it seems less and less able to do so. [Weiterlesen >>>] Tweet/**** In letzter Zeit bekomme ich vermehrt Anfragen für Texte auf Englisch. Das macht mir zwar mehr Mühe, da ich nicht so erfahren bin, in dieser Sprache zu … Weiterlesen

Veröffentlicht unter english Kontrollverlust Plattformpolitik
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