In Ukraine the world witnessed a large mass of individuals protesting for their rights in a government that had become a vacuum of power but what was more troubling than the protestors being harassed by police is how the exiled government used technology as a scare tactic. Amidst the revelations of Russia taking Crimea there is one solid piece of evidence prior to that action that is damning to those of us who are technology evangelist and to those of us who just value freedom; it is the use of metadata.
The ‘Euromaiden’ protests taught us that despite the freedoms taken for granted in any nation-state there is a reaction to every action. The Ukrainian government at the time sent a text to everyone participating in the vicinity of the ‘Euromaiden’ protests saying, “Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass disturbance.” The disconcerting nature of this action speaks volumes to the weary freedom of speech and human rights advocate.
Metadata is a silent enemy of protesting. Technology as seen with the Snowden leaks and the ‘Euromaiden’ protests shows that any information one gives out or even doesn’t assume is likely to be used against them and that our technology has become corruptible by governments worldwide. Does that mean you should grow a beard, live in a cabin and hunt for the rest of your life without any technology? No, that just means you’re a future unibomber if you’re thinking about that.
The future of technology being corruptible by governments is a realization that all Netizens are going to have to deal with. The good ole days of technology which didn’t intervene in our affairs by the government are over; if there was ever a time when it wasn’t used against us so profusely.