Digital Citizenship and Surveillance| The Normalization of Surveillance and the Invisibility of Digital Citizenship: Media Debates After the Snowden Revelations

Karin Wahl-Jorgensen, Lucy Bennett, Gregory Taylor


Based on an analysis of newspaper and blog coverage of the Snowden revelations and their aftermath, our study demonstrates that newspapers normalize surveillance by highlighting concerns over national security and focusing on surveillance of elites, and minimize the attention given to the mass surveillance of citizens. By contrast, blogs allow more critical discussions relevant to digital citizenship, enabling debates on civil rights and privacy. This article argues that if conventional media limit debates relevant to digital citizenship, blogs may provide a space that contests and makes visible the key problems scantly evident in newspapers. We suggest research on digital citizenship in mediated debates should focus on how political subjects are silenced, as well as the emerging spaces where this silence can be broken.


blogs, bulk data, digital citizenship, digital rights, journalism, mass surveillance, normalization, Snowden, surveillance

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