Big Brother Is Watching You…

No, I’m not about to discuss the reality television series that hit fame here in the mid 00’s. Rather, I’m talking about the fictitious figure from George Orwell’s dystopian novel, 1984. Some of you reading this may be familiar with the text and others may not. If you are the latter, I highly suggest you add it to your to-read list as it really is a thought provoking piece of literature.

As I begin this second trimester of college this quote “Big Brother is watching you” has begun circulating in my mind. Currently studying the unit Digital Media and The Surveillance Society it seems appropriate now more than ever that I start to reflect on my own thoughts on surveillance and its presence in my everyday life.

When students like myself become aware of just how much we are constantly watched, we are usually shocked. How do they know we’re doing this? Why are items from my shopping cart now appearing on my Facebook feed?  Perhaps it’s through some of my knowledge as a journalism student or the fact I have previously undertaken media studies electives at university, but I’m not always surprised at how closely we are being monitored.

It’s not that I’m not concerned about what or just how much data is being taken from me online through my laptop and my smartphone- believe me, sometimes I do find it a tad creepy- but for the most part, I think surveillance is vital now more than ever in our society. It alerts officials to suspicious activity in regards to the current fight against terrorism, it protects us on public transport and in our classrooms. It proves itself as a positive operation the majority of the time.

Over the coming weeks, I hope to gather a deeper insight into some of the ways we are tracked every day on our phones and additionally how this sort of data has proved beneficial in solving criminal activity. That’s one area of surveillance I found find particularly fascinating. I will also be exploring  the concept of surveillance in the field of journalism and how it is used and misused.

I’m really excited to blog with you more over the coming weeks and I can’t wait to collaborate with some of you soon.

Until next time,

– C