Manuel Castells: Power and counter-power in the digital society

Manuel Castells: Power and counter-power in the digital society

Hadley's willkommen Bienvenue use even monedas welcome to a special night at Kino internet tonight we are happy you made it through the rain and the cold to make sense of the digital society it's a night to listen it's a night to think about the world we live in to be more precise the digital world we live in and it's a night to talk about it so by the way hashtag digital society and we're going to do all three things tonight I'm Miriam I'm nice to meet you although I can't see you very clearly and I'll be the moderator for the next two hours this night is not a singular event but it's a whole starting point for a series that will take place over the year 2018 and it's a series that is hosted by two institutions one comes from the side of scientific research and the other one tackles citizenship education so as a first start for tonight we'll have a short introduction talk for the lecture and for the series by our two hosts so please welcome with me mrs. Hoffman and mrs. Kareena on stage [Applause] so these are the people sitting on the couch and watching us via livestream so we just say hi for a moment who are these two ladies this is Jeanette Hoffmann she is research director at the hick the Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society short the humble Institute and this one is PETA greener head of the event department at B P B which means bonus and challah for possible young as many of you know and an English I learned a new expression that's the German federal agency for civic education thanks for being here mrs. Hoffman let's start with you because I think you are the reason we are here tonight because you had the idea for the series and for the lecture to put it in simple words how come what inspired or perhaps bothered you yeah thank you very much I've been doing research on Internet related issues for quite some time it's about to stop focusing just on single issues and try to draw a broader picture of the social transformations of our modern societies and I also thought this idea of generating a broader picture should be both historically and theoretically grounded and not just consist of anecdotes so my idea was that we need to invite great thinkers and I also wanted to put an emphasis on European thinkers and there is a reason for that as well most of the works we see on this issue of Internet in society and its transformation actually come from the origins of the technology the US the especially the US has put a lot of money into research on the process of digitalization and my wish would be that we also cultivate European perspectives and sort of build on our European research traditions and then finally I wanted to create a public discourse that not only involves academics but also the broader public and that's why I'm so glad that we convinced the Bundys centolla to help us doing that and you're here tonight from the Winston trailer from the BPP she just mentioned mrs. Hoffman just mentioned the broader picture too not to have anecdotes but to know what it's all about to see the big picture do you feel the people you address like ordinary people citizens like you and me do you feel like a need for that or is everyone just happy with smartphone in hand and social media accounts online well it depends a bit on who we are talking about because we have a quite broad range of what we call what we call target groups but what we what we observe during during the last year's is that there is a lot of in the traditional the traditional community of multipliers of civic education on one hand there like for example teachers there is a lot of interest in more less pragmatic questions so how can they use digital media it in school how can they teach certain aspects of media literacy and but on the same time there's also a quite huge interest in these fundamental questions that will be raised during during this lecture but this always let's that's how what we observe is it always goes hand in hand with a mere rejection of anything that has to do with digital society and well I or my institution we are not sure whether it's where this leads to if you have this attitude doesn't it prevent to also discover good potential of digitalization doesn't it prevent to think deeper and to analyze how we can how we can shape how we could how we can find the right prerequisites to participate and influence the way that the developments will take and this is a very very this is a very very fundamental question for our organization so it's it's one of the core topics and one of the cross-cutting topics that we are going to tackle next year so it was a brilliant coincident that Jeannette approached us for cooperation and it seems they're quite a good match because you were talking about the big picture the discourse and you talked about like breaking it down being pragmatic and and making sense out of it ok let's talk about expectations what do you wish to achieve with the series one of my big issues is the question of agency meaning who actually drives this process of transformation very often when we listen to the public discourse it seems to be that the technology is nearly an autonomous force and I don't think that it's an adequate way of looking at the change we are seeing so we need to get a better understanding of the interaction between society and what we see as digitalization how we actually acquire new technologies what kind of projections predictions we develop etc so what I want to achieve is that we sort of sharpen our view of what's going on and educate ourselves ok what is the best that could happen tonight mrs. green what's the best the best that could happen tonight is that this would be that this would be a start to broaden the platform of discussion on the topics that have just been mentioned by imaginative men because what what we observe is that the discussion about all this implication on society and politics of digitalization is discussed in more or less closed closed circles of experts in the academic world and I think it's it's the right time to open the platform for the debate and well let's be blunt I don't I don't think that we have a representative the representation of all the population in Germany here but at least we started to mix the communities of ppb and the CIM and the communities of the Institute and this might be this might be quite quite fruitful this might raise cross-fertilization of discourses and over the year we will take up some of the of the topics of the series of lectures and to break it down and to make it digestible for ordinary citizens let's look at tonight's guest because I think that the opening night like sets a tone for the whole series why did you choose Manuel Castells first of all he's certainly the most suitable person to invite as an opening lecture because he was actually the first one was a social science background who preach the significance of the changes to come he started publishing his trilogy of the Information Age already in the mid 90s that was at a time when perhaps most of the people here in the room didn't even know what the internet is so I thought he would be the best person to approach and then I sent him an email and I couldn't believe it he answered within a few minutes and said yes he would come I feel I mean I was nearly shocked and thought this must be a ghost it can't be him but he did decide to come because he also liked this idea of developing a European perspective ok so it was a brilliant idea thank you for having it and thank you for sharing it with us and obviously 500 400 people came tonight to hear him and to start the series thank you very much so how do we proceed from here we'll first listen to Manuel Costello and his lecture and then afterwards we can have a talk with him and since it's a talk about digital society we use a digital tool so you can participate in it the only thing you need for that is your smartphone where you can type in the questions you have during the talk I'll explain later on how it works it's not complicated at all and so we will be able to have a conversation with a lot of people in the room so when we announced that Monroe Castel is tonight's guest the registration numbers jumped in too high it's unknown before so we guess that you know who is here so my introduction to him is quite brief Senora señoras please welcome with me influential sociologist professor emeritus at Berkeley author of the information etiology manuel castells bienvenido [Applause] Thank You Miriam and I would like first of all to thank the humbled Institute for internet society and the federal agency for civic education for their kind invitation that allowed me to be here with you tonight to change a number of ideas about my the research that had been conducting in the last five six years and I really want to thank all of you for your interest and presence here through the cold night of Berlin and I like particularly to be here with you tonight and I can tell you that it's the secret but why I answer immediately to Janette I have a deep appreciation for Berlin in many ways it's among other things now Berlin is widely considered one of the key nodes in in intellectual cultural political innovation in Europe and this is acknowledged and this is one testimony to human resilience and to the ability to overcome the mysteries of wars and States and bureaucracies to ultimately have describing culture in every aspect to relax before the lecture I spend significant part of the night yesterday night at the Berliner Republic cafe which as you know is open until 5:00 a.m. and and that confirmed my impressions of Berlin I had been several times the but I had not been in the last eight years so the words about the about time to come back of course my most significant experience in Berlin many years ago came to Berlin even at the time and which was a divided Berlin but of course meant the most significant experience in Berlin was in the early 1990 when the moment we still the CDR was there but they it was possible to cross the wall and with a small group of friends both Russian and German we crossed the wall like seven times in a row to make sure that that was possible and that would seem to be unthinkable was starting to create a wall that would unite rather than separate and I was very moved by that experience and since then on I have been coming regularly I presented in Berlin the German version of my trilogy on the formation age a few years ago and that continues to be a part emotional part intellectual interest to be somewhat a little bit part of your society as as you know I are some people know I spent much of my intellectual life in Berkeley but now in Los Angeles but still I spend more or less half of my time in Europe mainly in my Barcelona but also going to other places in Europe to feel the vitality of this cultural interaction my lecture tonight will be relating thank you you know the only technology that never worked with a sound technology in the lectures sometimes I decide to just throw away the micro and pick myself since I in my young age I was a actor in theater very close to sociologists and and then I speak with my own voice Adam I am I trust German technology so now I'm going to speak with some detail from here so they the topic of my lecture today to some extent is for me for me the most important topic of the research he had been doing for quite a while as some of this is in my book communication power but throughout the last say six to seven years this has been my obsession because power relationships are the foundational relationships of society this has been my lamb motif throughout my entire career power why because those who are empowered determine shape the institutions and the norms that regulate our lives so in that sense power relationships are the foundational relations of society are the DNA of societies however wherever the interesting thing is that wherever there is power there is always counter power and in that sense my analysis is not an analysis of domination in the classic tradition of social sciences is always an analysis of domination counter domination power relationships and resistance to this power and the ability and the possibility for people whose values and interests are excluded from the institutions of society to voice their dissent and to attempt as a of the institutions that construct society and in fact our historical experience then and now is always determined by the interaction between power and control power a relentless interaction there is no social peace sorry he's an endless constant interaction between the attempt to impose interest from destitution and the attempt to change the institution democratically or through different means to be able to to introduce new values and new interests in distributions of society and therefore the problem that power has always been largely exercised through two main means and this is also the way Power has been conceptualized in the social sciences tradition there are many forms of power but fundamentally there are two major processes institutions of power coercive power persuasive power power over the bodies the power over the minds meaning on the one hand power in the Max Weber tradition has the monopoly of violet but violence by the state well I say the monopoly the monopoly of violence legitimate or not over the state that's that really what has been considered the main form of power but always has been another form of power given that is the capacity of shape Minds to elicit the consensus of the subjects by the action of different centers of power in society or at least the resignation of the subjects that that's the way it is and we cannot do much this is a fundamental process of power which goes long tradition in the social sciences Foucault but also to some extent the notion of glam see about the hegemony in society that was related to this capacity to shape minds to shape the way we think however again this both coercive power and persuasive power can be resisted and even assisted and people react against the their inability to to be able to go into the discourse and into the debate and in ways that they are protagonists of the debate and that they reshaped the debate and again so there is power and under powerless coercive power and persuasive power in both cases and in both cases but particularly in persuasive power all depends on information and communication information on communication had been the critical tools of power and the critical tools of counter power throughout history why because it through communication people are connected so if the process of communication is controlled by those who are in power then the signals that people receive in their brains comes from a system of values interests symbols that are adapted to what the powerful think or would like that people think about themselves and vice versa the only way to change is when people who do not agree do not accept the social order communicate with other people who have similar attitudes and similar experience to in my language to reprogram the process of communica in terms of their own interest and again this communication system this information retrieval system never ends and is in a constant dialectical relationship however information and communication are the key factors in the accumulation and distribution of wealth and power in society and the Ishrat history and the actual processes that determine information on communication largely depend on specific technological paradigms meaning communication is very different depending on the communication technologies and information technologies of each time could be the printing press could be the church discourses from the church authorities but throughout history the distribution of pamphlets has been essential in in any kind of of revolution so in other words the way we think doesn't depend only on ourselves or some abstract culture in which in the metaphysical and the way we think depends on the signals that we receive from others so the connection between our neural networks and the communication networks on which any social activity is based now and in that sense technology does not determine but is an essential medium of organization communication and the interaction between our neural networks on the basis of communication networks the fundamental transformation of our time is the advent of ubiquitous digital communication and information networks anyway the student of mine German actually Martin Hilbert and economies finished his dissertation with me in Samuel is 2010 and published his summary of his dissertation in the journal Science which is consider a standard of scientific research and he this addition was for the first time he calculated they the entire information existing in the planet and the platforms in which and countries and institutions in which this information was processed he showed that 92 percent of all the information in the planet mister measuring in in bytes 92 percent was already digitized now the proportion is about 95 96 percent so we live in a planet in Whitley and almost entirely information is digitized which allows therefore two things allows the existence of a common language of communication between different sets of information and second allies allows the ability of processing information digital technologies to recombine to exchange to move at high speed in terms of volume and complexity the communication process and how this is transmitted well the other that just give me it's not really datas illustration is reminding you where we are in in our society they currently this of this 90 to 96 percent of digitized information the overwhelming proportion is accessible by internet and wireless networks of communication we have today four billion Internet users in the world on a planet of seven point five and we have seven billion seven billion a planet or seven point five wireless communication numbers not devices not phones subscribers meaning numbers where you can go its cluding children under the age of three although probably this is coming the moment which they have also their personal wireless number that means that we have a planet which is entirely connected of course with different technologies different capacities and particularly different culture and educational capacities to use this communication but we are connected and in addition we already have at this point fifty percent of the adult population of the world has a smartphone that is a computer in a wireless device so in this new environment a number of things are happening that deeply affect the institutions of power making and wealth making and here we have to remind which are still the fundamental logics of these institutions institutions in general in society are organized around the state and productivity and the source of wealth in our societies is organized around capital state and capital are still the cornerstones of our social organization so they still dominate anything that happens even in the new technological environment although one of the critical matters about the Internet is that the users of the Internet have shaped the actual technologies and content of the Internet use throughout their history both state and capital however operate in a given technological environment and our societies that is the digitization of everything States seek to establish and maintain power capital seeks to increase profits this has not changed power is by taine buy destitution or control of communication either government or media control by big corporations the maintenance of power required extensive surveillance for competition with other states and for keeping order internally while capital expansion depends on the real relentless capacity of commodifying everything transforming everything in the commodity that can be bought and sold and again in both processes informational communication meaning digital communication in our society are essential indeed the internet was characterized and it is as a technology of freedom of free communication and it is a technology of free communication because simply because those who decide the internet technologies in the 1960s 70s deliberately tried to have to design a technology that would be difficult to control is one of the greatest paradoxes of internet history that even if the program that led to internet was financed by DARPA the Defense Department of the United States research agency they actually was not intended as a military use by any means was actually funding computer scientists working in designing new forms of computer communication and at the beginning they really didn't know what to use for they mainly they try to use it for using the capacity spare capacity of computers to increase time that they could use the computer so by sharing the capacity of either computers but very very soon they'd arrive to our other uses and the most important first he may lists that are developed by the computer scientists mainly in the US the campus's was about sharing science fiction movies and Nobles and the way to buy weed everywhere this this is the source of internet collaboration they however through that these technologies and that's the critical point technologies of freedom are only as free as they are used for freedom but the fundamental transformation is that all communication became digitized and interconnected and created this the basis for massive global digital surveillance which is the most important expression of power in our society digital surveillance is comprehensive in an entirely integrated digital environment it what we call the digital exhaust the digital exhaust means that all the information is connected and therefore can be treated as a system the key issue is connecting credit cards phone calls computer activity search history ID numbers financial transactions email communication social networking sites and all the interaction the social networking sighs because there's the possibility of connecting everything with everything there is also the possibility of surveilling retrieving information and organizing this information in the interest of those who serve a so what has emerged particular in the last decade is what I call a global surveillance bureaucracy that whose major Kuantan lead took place after the 9/11 bombing of New York because that created the basis for funding and legal support in the United States and then throughout the world of extraordinary powers given to the surveillance agencies particularly in the United States they say the National Security Agency but all major countries have strengthened the power of surveillance of their own agencies GCHQ in in the United Kingdom it's it is probably the most sophisticated surveillance agency and the be the end agency in Germany is also powerful surveillance agency and they are all connected that imported thing they are all connected with France and Israel etc they are all connected and the connection is extremely important because legislation in some cases forbid and surveillance agency to spy citizens of their own country so what they do is very simple and this is real life not not just examples the French spied the Germans the Germans is by the French and then they exchange information so that's the most direct and important expression of the logic of power in the digital age is the cause the formation of of a fundamental a panopticon of extraordinary proportions in which everything is known by governments with very little judicial control in fact at the same time there is a different process that comes not from the state but from capital and the logic of profit which is the commodification of information whose most important effect is transforming consumers of communication meaning everybody into data we are all data that become and these data are key commodities these data are at the basis of the business model of all the major Internet companies Google and others in the sense that as they say in Silicon Valley you are not paying for the service you are paying with your data you are the currency and this goes into advertising goes into political manipulation goes into everything but the most important thing is to retrieve the information for from everybody and here is certain paradox but is a very important one a defining one because communication is free communication free in the sense that people can communicate with everybody because of that there has been a massive decentralization of communication at the same time there is a massive concentration of information meaning all the major companies as well as government's concentrate information from what from the Pratt the massive practice of people communicating with everything and with everybody on a daily basis so because we actually communicate everything the information retrieval agencies can pick up all our information without any problem precisely precisely because we are a highly communicative society at the same time there is a high level of monopoly of information both by the state and by private companies yes we have the notion that we have the rights protecting rights in terms of digital privacy well as you know it Scott McNealy the founder and CEO of Sun Microsystems in 1999 already issued the famous statement privacy in the digital age get over it there's absolutely no privacy yes companies have privacy policies written google has a privacy policy please go to the google website and read what is the privacy policy of google i can tell you the only information this is citing the only information Google reserves the right to obtain and process from its uses is the only one name address location email phone number critical number search history browsing habits purchases and selected content of emails other than that privacy respected this is the official privacy policy I am NOT being the magazine and trying to be analytical always so now we are moving into the direction of a new form of total networking and digitization what is called in the pop culture the Internet of Things meaning that what is connected increasingly is machines connecting machines with machine connecting objects and creating a hybrid network in which we are connecting among humans but each one of the humans are connected with objects and these objects are connected among themselves and the machines of different companies are organizing the connection according to their programs certainly their programs are ultimately programmed by humans but at the same time the logic of this connection follows certain protocols certain algorithm that the key algorithmic ASUS both for the government's and for cameras are secret and this algorithm such as the ability of a given network to reprogram itself constantly according to some meta program to make it more efficient more comprehensive and faster so we are not that we are moving this is not science fiction I never do science fiction what I what I what it is is we already are in a world of not billions but trillions of networks that all of them are programmed outside control and all of them ultimately have their own logic which is partly taken partly technological and partly linked to the interest of the state and not a large internet companies now the state and companies interact through all kind of technological economic and institutional corporations they have the companies have contracts for these surveillance agencies the surveillant agencies make favors to the companies but this is not exactly the same logic in fact during the key moment in which the National Security Agency was given all power to do everything they wanted there was they technologically they were not very advanced particularly they were not able to break some of the encryption procedures so they actually got most of the technology from the private sector and participates from Google from Apple from Facebook and the companies that originally were developing the new communication technologies but at the same time there are some important contradictions because they if consumers start panicking about the total like lack of privacy then they could try to protect the information through the one procedure that companies fear the most encryption and control by them the battle over encryption is a fundamental battle because is ultimately the only way in which we could protect ourselves and the ability the diffusion massive diffusion of encryption capacity which the technology would be common but the actual code of each encrypted message would be different and controlled by the user this is what panas governments and word panics companies now companies fear that if they push too much in the logic of controlling and providing information of every one of us to government then the backlash could wring their business model that remember their business model is our voluntary delivery of our lives transformed into data for this data to be sold and organized in the entire commercial world so that we can be targeted as consumers we can predict it and so behavior you go to some place to a restaurant they will know exactly you are supposed culinary tastes the same thing with books the same thing with travel the same thing with everything that's why companies Amazon others provides you with a list of the things that you are supposed to do because you have done in the past so you become a linear program trajectory in which you are the reflection of yourself the rest of your life and every is a very flexible programming so you change habits well this is also goes into the program and you are guided in the new direction so the logic of power is not the same thing not the logic of commodity in title because the logic of power as the head of the National Security Agency of the United States said well you know to find indications of a terrorist activity is in the in the wall at large is like finding a needle in a haystack so to do that I need the entire haystack meaning the entire set of information everywhere and then the programs can work but this is the logic of power again is not a logic of commercialization and commodity so there are contradictions and even in some cases companies like Apple have resisted in other cases Mark Zuckerberg has led a movement to stop the government of forcing the transmission of data and in other cases companies simply played this game of resisting and cooperating depending on moment so it's a complex logic it's an interactive logic it's not the same there are two different logics but the two logics together control the entire information system on which our life depends which are the consequences of this well first of all democracy is threatened by comprehensive surveillance because there is a symmetry between the surveillance and the survey meaning state and companies have access to information to the uses of information to the users information and the uses don't so it's one fundamental difference in asymmetry in in our society privacy is of course obliterated by the communication of data without consent so this analysis and this logic apparently moves toward the so called Orwellian universe of Big Brother controlling everything fortunately things in history and our society as well are more complicated because people have the will under capacity and even needed are not technology they have a passion for their freedom in general terms and institutions of society are not one-dimensional institutions they are the result of historical struggles between control and resistance to control so wherever there is surveillance and where there is breaching of privacy there is also counter surveillance and the defense of privacy operating along various lines of action such as there are there is there are a number of legal regulations depending on the institutions political judicial institutions for instance there is more protection in the European Union than in by far let alone in China however state both state and capital tend to counter the autonomy of these institutions these unstable violence depends on policy choices and ultimately there is in the case of government there's always one key argument national emergency security in a world threatened by terrorist in a world in which the powers of governments are constantly increased there is always the possibility to activate some legislation which goes to through the judicial authority like FISA in the United States with to obtain permission and with the judicial permission then they can operate legally with total control of information how this works very easy FISA has a number of judges and I could tell something similar about your number of judges which are created by fission judges that are principled independent judges but statistically speaking no one single decision by the National Security Agency has been reversed by a FISA judge not one in the last 20 years that the institution existed so national security and emergency had become the cover of every attempt to curtail the liberty and privacy that democratic societies in principle have but again they are still a number of judicial and legal protections that limit the power of surveillance also technologies of privacy protection encryption and others which hackers continue to develop every day as a way to resist they control the monopoly of information there are also a number of activities by legal social activism number of organizations such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Greenpeace and others that try to show the limits of the surveillance power for instance Greenpeace was able to detect the location of the repository of data of clandestine data by the National Security Agency in a remote area of Bluffdale Utah and then flew a blimp over the repository Greenpeace blimp with an arrow saying here is the earth the data of the illegal spying which of course created a whole uproar in other words and the Electronic Frontier Foundation files constant lawsuits against the United States the same thing in the European Union I multiple actions in as well as in the UK multiple actions of legal defense against the system hackers have developed all kind of technology networks to protect free communication and freedom of information in these particular countries for instance the network was constructed originally from Sweden but later explanatory pices two countries tor The Onion Router that for instance was able to maintain internet working partly in Egypt in 2011 during the time Egypt canceled internet or tried to cancel the internet for five days until they gave up because they were not able to then a very important activity of the whistleblowers like Snowden and others now then is only the last one that there were many others within the security agencies of the United States and of the European Union people who out of principle the site that they have to denounce what's going on it's now then what happened with him is that he knew what happened to those who were whistleblowers before him who were literally damaged for life in terms of persecution in terms of confiscation of their goods of their homes order everything they were written for ever so he prepared his exit way in advance to start his activities of collecting data about what the NSA was doing as part of a heroic mission to respond to this kind of activity against the principles of the American democracy of course he ended up in a Moscow suburb so everybody has concluded that he said was the rationale spy from the beginning was not such he tried to do something else he tried to ask for political asylum in some of the democratic regimes in Latin America particularly he was trying to go to Ecuador but he couldn't he couldn't because once he was in Moscow escaping from Hong Kong every flight in which was suspected that he could be including the flight the flight of president of Bolivia Evo Morales would be intercepted over the European airspace to search the plane to detain Snowden so at one point just simply couldn't move at all and so he's still there and I would guess that at one point the Russian influence starts being significant but was not the origin of the of his of his resistance and as well as the very controversial case of but important of WikiLeaks in which they are not the whistleblowers but they publicize and they distribute throughout the world the informations of illegal or not public activities from governments and companies that should be known by the citizens but they are not they are not so in other words this is to show that the more we go deeply into this system of systemic surveillance and breaching of liberties and privacy at the same time in many different ways individuals organizations social actives technological activists react and create a counter dynamics which is different moreover there has been the rise today nowadays of what is known as citizen journalism using surveillance technology to surveil the surveillance and to surveil those abuses of power from police brutality to financial wrongdoing this today one of the most important information is that anyone with a cell phone with a camera meaning all the cell phones practically can surprise some personality some bureaucrat some politician some leader of the company anyone doing something wrong or ethically wrong or legally wrong and can take the picture and upload it immediately and that starts a whole process of denunciation protest and sometimes legal action this is what social movement is they do systematically against police brutality everywhere that's an incredible instrument of control that's why every time that people start talking about well we are in a terrorist state because all these surveillance comes up on our like yeah but I can tell you that politicians these days when they do not behave and many of them don't they live their lives under you know they they most of their lives they spend their time making sure that nobody sees them that nobody knows about the financial deals etcetera etcetera so is both is both we surveil and we canter surveil all the time and then of course there is a fundamental change that has taken place in social movements and on the world with these particular technologies has been the rise of what I have studied lately of networked social movement that is social movements that is start outside the traditional political parties and traditional institutions and that they organized their own connection or the basis of a spontaneous uprising usually trigger but outrage and not decided by ideology and then from there they grow into major social movements such as occupied in number of years of the Spanish 15 of May movement and movements all over the world in Latin America in Asia even in Africa so social movements of our time our movement in which the capacity to organize their own communication members on the basis of their own ideas and their own outrage sharing with others without necessarily having an organization without having a common ideology without having a common project these had been completely transformed thanks to their capacity to use a free communication system to bypass the traditional controls now as you know me a number of people but usually traditional media and as well as the politicians of all kind have downplayed the importance of these movements and well they kept tired they produce nothing well in my book there was of outrage and and hope I showed a number of key examples of actual political change and political transformation in many countries linked to the ripple effects to the second level effects of this social movement with that do not happen in one day because they are not violent movements in any way but permit they use the transformation through the minds of the people so the process is social movements organized themselves on the basis of horizontal new forms of free communication networks based on the internet and wireless communication interaction symbolic actions sometimes is through the internet but mainly is through the combination of Internet and occupation of urban space and the connection between the two sets of terms urban network and Internet there was on the basis of this they create what I call a space of autonomy this space of autonomy is the beginning of the ability to connect with other people who are equally outraged and at the same time star deliberation and process to provide alternative projects in society without going through the same traditional channels of political organization alright these movements through their action even if they don't seize power in the sense of occupying the state what they do is the influence the transformation of consciousness in the minds of people as has always been the role of social movement social movement and fundamentally aiming at changing the values of society as the environmental movement as the feminist movement as the identity movement of many different kinds so the same thing with this kind of network social movements through their action the minds of the people changed and eventually in some cases political changes also happen at the level of distributions example of this is the transformation of the Spanish political system through the actions of the parties that resulted from the 15 May movement particularly the so called polymers which and now controls about 20% of the Spanish vote or they most recent example because I like also to show the examples that happened with some effects after three four five years after the movement example in the Chilean presidential election in which the leaders of the student movement of four four years ago now decided to create a new party because neither the right or the center left respond to their aspirations and they in the first election they have obtained over twenty percent of the vote and therefore they are becoming the arbiters of the new election the new presidential election in Chile and for you to see they had the leaders of the movement were so young that they could not reach the legal age to be present so they have to ask a friend a nice woman could you be our presidential candidate because we cannot even so in other words the connection goes through communication networks that creates a process of mobilization that ultimately affects not just the people who are in the movement but the society at large least in the case of a Spain there were 70 percent of the population was in agreement with this movement in the case of the United States against what is considered the failure of the Occupy Wall Street movement it actually had a significant success and obtained a support of about one-third of the population in terms of of the support the movement and the hostility only of a 20% of the population they were significant in changing the public opinion particularly amount the young people of America now when someone would say well ok so what a nice political effect thump point is the Trump as much as one can say the mystery of this ignorant sexiest races had regarding narcissus guy become president the United States has to be understood as a reaction against the establishment of both the Republicans and the Democrats that word made possible the election of term but on the other hand there was also another and anti-establishment candidate in the Democratic Party that had serious chances and in fact the studies show that he would have beaten Trump in the general election Bernie Sanders senator who was part of the Occupy movement literally part being in the cups of the Occupy movement and therefore taking a huge mobilization among the young people that was crushed in the process nomination by the bureaucratic apparatus of the Democratic Party to present in in the most unbelievable mistake in politics to present the super-stylish one candidate Hillary Clinton financial establishment and political struggle against the anti-establishment candidate so even even with that tongue being Isis as seriously as his hearing won the popular vote by two million but some concentrated his support in key states where the working class had been hurt by the realization and he was able to do it but Bernie Sanders both had won in these same states and was actually pushed out of the race by they own Democratic Party stuntman this is not to go down to this electron analysis is to show that they were also important effects of the network social movements in the political system even in the United States I could go country after country when there was a movement it doesn't mean that because there were no movers in in in our countries when there was a movement that had a significant effect now these social movements could not have existed without the capacity to communicate through digital networks of communication absolutely not could be some protest but they can what they were what they did was possible because of this new communication technologies problem is of course that they were able to do so but at the same time they were somewhat prisoner of the network technologies that existed they communicated through Twitter through Facebook through Instagram etc however they are very conscious of that and they have developed a series of new technologies of communication that could be encrypted and not controlled by for instance Facebook but just in case toward the future particularly they develop some technology encrypted angle con n minus one the problem is that very limited works very well in a small network but not in large number but a number of other experiences and ultimately all these movements are massively using a different kind of networking technology telegram that was in developed in Germany by Russian hackers that emigrated from Russia but work on the possibility of generating encrypted technologies for the communication of social movements independent from the other major institutions so Internet ultimately has become has shown its potential as a space of free expression and disintermediation of communication control that way the defence of Internet freedom has become one of the fundamental political battles for the world because of course Internet in itself cannot be control but it can be intercepted in many ways and also they those who propose messages that are anti-establishment in the Internet can be identified for instance in China and punished however I always say having a studied in death the Chinese system of control that yes the messenger can be identified and punished and sent to prison and there are many many many hundreds of Chinese activist in jail however the message cannot be intercepted the message as such would have to be intercepted in the entire internet level and this is literally impossible so if you are the messenger that's important but if you are the message you can go on and live and communicate and defuse and in that sense the net is space of free communication free communication doesn't mean the kind of freedom for the uses that we would like in normative terms the tram movement was very active in organizing network of racist and sexist mobilizations and the same thing in Germany with a neo-nazi parties an alternative for Germany etc so the fact the Internet has free communication it doesn't mean that this is for the good uses according to each one's taste if for whatever happens in society internet is the mirror of society how good or how bad Society is each one of us that is immediately reflected in the internet so the key question is not about the if technology is good or bad because it's not as the great historian of Technology Marvin Glasper said technology is neither good or bad neither it is neutral meaning what that is very important but the defects the effects are undetermined Internet is use to be and is free communication system but the uses of this freedom are socially determined social media social networks now are largely taken over the communication space and largely pushing aside the mass media mass media were not always reliable were not always diverse system of communication and not always as truthful as they want to say they are for instance remember the great New York Times reporting the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq helping to trigger the world but to a large extent the most important thing now is not the replacement of one system another but what I call a general cacophony of information and ideas in the in the social networks the period of post truth they called now lives are called post truth so every everything is there lies BOTS that multiply by hundreds and thousands they fake news that are circulating in the in the Internet and in the social network and we do something about that yes and no because technologically even if some of the both programs can be deactivated by fake news is literally impossible to control these people produce fake news if people pollute the information over the Internet so the only answer is the ability of educated citizens informed citizens to actively participate in these exchanges and correct information and correct ideas according to their experience to the values and to their interest and I finish the issue is that in a new technological environment which have tried to show the historical novelty we still have the oldest social struggle we still have the struggle against the abuses of power from the state and the exploitation from monopoly companies and this struggle continues to be and will continue to be in the fence of the freedom and dignity of the humankind new technologies or the issues all form of oppression and all new forms of struggle and response to the pressure thank you for your tears [Applause] chamomile medium thanks for coming so it's time for our talk now and not only between Manuel Castells and me but between you and him if you would like to tweet that's for you yeah because I have my own if you'd like to twitter the hashtag is digital society and if you would like to participate here or from your couch or sofa or whatever wherever you are you can use your smartphone if you need the internet right here at Kenan Tennyson al the password is digital 2017 so you can just open your browser and go to the website that is down here manty calm and the next step is that you type it in the code you see there 8 4 7 0 9 4 and with that you should be able to type in a question it's the same like intuitive it's 140 characters so be sure to be precise with your questions and let's just try out if it works good question the problem is that we said okay 500 people in a room if we have one microphone it's a question of power who gets it you know so we chose to use that tool so that many people can participate I can tell you one problem there is no escape in that sense you can counter with your ideas they what the surveillance tries to impose but this is being recorded okay and and it's being a stream so we are in the system they you know we one thing sorry the time the situation but this is a critical point how I cannot but well it's very simple don't be in Facebook don't be in Twitter don't be in any social network at all don't be in YouTube don't don't be in anything don't use Google of course don't don't use by do if you are in China don't don't use anything and in addition don't use credit cards and never give your ID connected to any electronic transaction that you have and if you do Bitcoin be careful because Bitcoin also transmits data okay so it's there no way not to be in the visitors exhaust is not to confirm to any of the current practice and habits of society that why is so tricky so we're not citizens anymore I see that you it's working the tool is working we I would like to ask you to just type in shortly why you're here you have already typed him some questions let's just see why your tonight because mrs. Hoffman for example she said I'm here to have the bigger picture that's why I mean my reason for being here so let's just check out the tool if it works and riot why you're here what your reason is to be here interest is one answer to better understand our society today is one of the reasons this is the the audience nuts not me and there's someone riding master thesis on this course of power on Twitter so it's a concrete academic interest I would say okay so let's go on to the question part so you can type in your questions now I just put on the next slide so you should be able to type in your questions and we continue why we're waiting for the questions then you send your castells I switch between Spanish and and English I'm sorry Catalan oh I'm sorry [Applause] you mentioned that shaping our minds is where power comes from the ability to shape minds is the fundamental source of power and you once said that torturing body is it's less effective than shaping the minds this is why pure repression won't last so let's see where that power exactly comes from how does it work let's have a closer look at it well it can be promoting the main thing is resignation but can be promoting the idea that your life is better if you simply mold your life what is happening already and the instructions that that you do if you are a good citizen in the sense that you just follow the norms and you follow instructions as women or three generations ago were told by their mothers and grandmothers you have to do this way up this way or you will not be able to marry and then you're in trouble that's one way or the other which is more and more frequent is what I call resignation meaning there is no other way and the system in in terms of when you don't follow some of the basic rules of society you may end up in very bad situation in terms of paying your rent going on with your life having a regular job that determines everything else that happens in life so ultimately since alternatives to the existing order are not very visible since what used to be Party politics has become two different versions of the same form of life and nomination well then people are discouraged in terms of the any possibility to change their life so they go into the intimate like their private life they go into try to make my life in a that at least I have some pleasure of existence with my friends my love my family my work but only as long as you keep it within in your individual existence and projects you will not find obstacles if you try for instance what I we just discussed for instance if you don't want your life to be known completely known in every detail you have to become a much that person in this society imagine that you don't want to do to pay with credit cards well because by the way but critical is the most important element of loss of privacy that we have through your credit card everything is known because then is connected to everything else so try to try to have a life without a critical eye I can tell you people who can do it drug traffickers and professional criminals they don't use credit cards they pay cash however they can work in terms of cash because they are not afraid that someone taking the cash from them in the street so that's the critical matter the critical matter is that there are certain norms of society that you have to abide by these norms or then you will be marginalized as long as things are okay meaning that you have a life which is not dramatic then then it's alright but if you at any moment whether it's a financial crisis and economic crisis and job crisis or simply the incapacity to accept stupidity in your daily life in terms of what happens in the school or in the office or anywhere at that point any disinfectant behavior becomes stigmatized and then you start having the series of gestures that poison your life so you better stay quiet and behave that's what I mean and that's how five his shape in the mind and this is reproduced in the mass media this is reproduced in the schools this is reproduced in institutions this is the normalization of life is through all the systems of communication that ultimately define what is good what is bad what is dangerous what is standard so one effect of power is resignation is what resignation yeah fundamentally fail but how can we be active citizens participate have a normal social life with a credit card and not resignate well the general experience in society is that people accept resignation as the less evil until they cannot take it anymore and so that's why in terms of now talking about some kind of political neuroscience there are two key emotions that shape human behavior most important fear most important emotion safe in human behavior is fear we are the most important one we law we all move for life in terms of fear being afraid of this of this of this of this fear that nothing but happens to us that's one they and the antidote against fear it's already another muscle which is not and is known as outrage meaning when you can not take it anymore and then you explode so that's why my book is from outrage to hope because then the third emotion is when you project the different life which is hope so the sequin is you are afraid and therefore you don't move you don't do anything you accept whatever at one point things are so unbearable that you explode can be individual can be social can be at the school can be and your job can be in society at large and then from there this explosion is communicated through communication networks to others and then what is an individual experience becomes a social experience through the act of communication and that that leads to the deliberation of other possibilities which induce hope which is the potent positive emotion to transcend your current state of life and this is where social movements come in exactly okay a quick and a very tricky question from the audience is the internet beneficial for or a threat to democracy what is the internet beneficial or is it a threat to democracy internet depends internet depends of what we call democracy ebuy democracy we call the reproduction of the existing institutions without deliberation or challenge from the citizens internet ism is a threat to powers that be in every country you know I have been so many times in commissions of different governments it is used in the European Union the United Nations cetera about the Internet policy and the first question the government representatives as always is how can we control the Internet and when I say difficult as the cobra's that try to do it and you cannot is like controlling electricity internet is the basis of the entire information communication system in our societies and therefore they are not interested anymore in doing anything about the Internet in other words governments do not like the Internet they generally I'm talking in general of course there are exceptions such as I said but why not because governments are based in the terms in terms of their power on the capacity to control information on communication and internet actually removes much of the control of communication from the hands of government institutions and every time that they they can they use a protecting national security for instance to curtail Internet freedom before and for instance in the 1990s with Clinton in the United States they use they tried to use what everybody has used a child pornography of course we are all indignant about child pornography so they tried to use child pornography as a way to develop a number of controls over the Internet well one of the examples of what I was telling you before but the judicial protection of freedom in that particular case in the United States the act of what was called the act of decency in the internet by Clinton a Democrat and Liberal Democrat it was actually struck down by the federal courts in a sentence that was quite interesting in terms of the language and the federal court of appeals canceled the law as an attempt to curtail freedom of expression and added yes is true that much of the sphere of expression in the Internet is chaos but citizens have a constitutional right to chaos which i think is an interesting notion so to a large extent the government's the largest and governors would like to divide internet between the useful internet education business etcetera and the free expression of everything in the internet which is in the essence of the internet culture and that's a debate in society should we be free of communicating even if this creates many uncontrolled expressions for instance to take clear example sexism that is full of sexist so should then should cut off the internet well the bad news is that even if we wanted we cannot there are some critical voices here one says where is the theory the other one says why didn't you talk about society about about society and oh yeah very legitimate and the other one says that these are phenomena that have been described fifty years ago why do we see no theoretical advancement why is signs so populist all right so that really very important question well I talk about society because that's my job and I'm a social scientist and I try to understand the procedure of society I'm not a noise I'm trying to study and I have been trying to study the interaction between new technological forms and social processes of every kind but about the theory I actually I don't do theory I try I try to do research which means understanding real social processes the world of course we need some theoretical tools but I don't do theory for the sake of theory I try to understand and what I need some concepts I create the concepts or I borrow concepts sometimes and use these concepts to organize the information that leads to the understanding of a particular social process many of the theories for instance about social movements do not really understand what is the novelty of social movements when it's based on free network of communication much of what is the analysis of surveillance relates to all theories of surveillance and construction of the discourse that do not really interact with the process we observe now I'm going to make one exception that is Foucault which I do think that it would be interested if he could see that beyond destitution that he mentioned as as well other panopticon's could be could be experiencing humankind but fundamentally I would say that if you would today I'd certainly did not use a theory percent but in my books I developed theory on the basis of my observation and on this particular topic I had a 600 pages book called communication power which at the end of the book on the basis of all the information and analysis Americanized and he produced proposes a theory of power which I call a network theory of power so I certainly today I did introduce much of your power although although I implicitly refer to the logic of neurosis critical in our type of society but to be more blunt I'm a very non typical social science in that say I don't think that facts per se explain anything we have to construct analytical frameworks but simply specific analytical frameworks to explain something if is possible to relate to grand theory and to general theory maybe but that not my personal interest my personal interest is to understand the world as it works because what I would like is that people and use my analysis to change it let's talk about power and encounter power there are some questions here from you one question is would you suggest that there is a balance between power and counter power as you gave examples for and another question is does the digital age make counter power more effective more effective mm-hmm well the balance is always unstable institutions are what I call crystallized power that is power relationships that at one point in history were dominant and constructed a constitution state laws that create the framework for human behavior so power is is traditionalized these divisions are an expression of power but not only of power were also stood users as the expression of the resistance to this power for instance the most typical example is not just the logic of capital and business interest it's also the logic of the working-classes struggles that developed for many decades and ultimately created the welfare state workers unions workers rights etcetera is both things at the same time but it never ends every time that there is an economic crisis the main attempt is to cut down the wages on the with the idea that this will increase the profits and the economy will work because profit will be increased so it's always an unstable matter women rights women rights again thirty years ago were almost entirely ignored in many many ways the feminist movement and the women move in general in many countries in most countries have completely changed the consciousness of women and therefore the women condition in many ways so this has changed in terms of legislation in terms of appointments of women to positions of power in terms of what is taught in the schools in terms of their gender relationship at all levels of society but at the same time the reaction in many cases is violence against women which is not prosecuted with too much energy in many countries and in many instances so it's constantly is a constant struggle to reinstate the women rights that we're Conquer decades ago so that for me is an example that the situation is never completely stabilized are we making progress toward more equal rights in every aspect depends depends on countries depends on issues what was the stigmatization of homosexuals right to marriage for instance years ago now has been normalized in some societies but not in many others and the stigma and discrimination continues to work against homosexuals against transsexuals and in the entire society so again there is a constant struggle to the fed new frontiers of human rights and at the same time a constant attempt to establish instruments of discrimination or pleasure the most important thing in Europe these days is enough obeah the hatred of people who are different apparently different in culture or ethnic terms the hatred of people who try desperately to make a new life in the context of rich affluent Europe well this is human right which is being denied in practice under the pressure of certain segments of the population so this struggle never ends there to question there's a question in Catalan by the way which I cannot read I'm going to pass it on to you afterwards to say if you want to change language let's change there's a basically fundamental questions are the non digital citizens powerless this is one question because we were talking about the 4.5 billion people being online and the other what what happens to the others and the other question is what do we have a free choice in a digital world very good question really well first of all I was talking about regular Internet users in terms of the now in terms of connectivity I insist that not necessarily through internet but in terms of connectivity everybody is at this point everybody with some exceptions is connected if we have 7 billion numbers of mobile phones in practice of which half are so-called smart phones right they the other thing is in terms of in terms of these uses of the Internet the big divide is not anymore access or not access the big divide is because literally at this point the large majority of people have access to internet and this also is almost saturation in many countries and those were not connected to their homes like in many African latin-american countries they're connected to internet cafes schools workplaces etc the most important divide in the actual use of internet business is H is H a large proportion of people who are over 60 let's say don't practice the Internet in developing countries in places like Germany or the United States or England certainly also they are Internet users but in most cases in the these billions that are still missing most of it is not linked to lack of possible connectivity is lack is fundamentally age and this is I always say when I will be gone my generation will be gone will be no problem of digital divide in terms of internet use it will be a problem of other problems than access you know one important thing about this is that the most significant divide is the cultural and educational divide because the moment we are all connected to the Internet the ability to know what to do with this connection how to access resources how to use these resources to develop your own life your own project which is ultimately education this is what becomes the most important divide so what Internet does it reproduces and expands the most significant divide that has been all over history education the level of education determines what people can do or not with Internet and we have a studies in the schools that show that children from poor families you introduce internet in the school these children do even worse children of middle class families with Internet in the school they do much better why because they have the cultural resources to actually use the internet for anything they want while the poor children with no background of Education and their families they ultimately use it for games for playing without any access not only to education but to a broader exploration of the wall of information so if the divide is age for example it's not the axis because that was that there was one question here that said is the struggle for power power different and the global north and the global south and by what I listen to you right now you would say no it's not no the let's say the the most important difference there is in terms of the quality of the connection the quality of the access not as we used to say in terms of the capacity to access the internet the grow-out south the large majority of the population has access to Internet but what quality of access and what to do with this access is what is different from the highly developed countries in which the education system allows people to understand and process information you said that education is the answer and one question here refers to that and the question goes so who provides the education in principle the schools in every society at the institutions that provide the education the problem is that schools are still based on a very old pedagogy not only technology pedagogy in which are determined on the basis of the authority of the teacher and the programs that are marked by educational bureaucracies rather than by the geography that internet would allow which is the ability for children to develop their own ideas and their own explorations guided and supported by the teachers and and the issue is that the freedom of exploration is not part of most of the programs of the educational system but that is where the problem is we did in Catalonia we did a comprehensive study all the primary and secondary schools and what we found is that the school system was such that teachers at home would use the Internet children at home would use the Internet but not in the school because it was not part not only the technical part but the the use of Internet in the school was not made possible by the type of organization both institutional and intellectual in terms of the content of the other programs I have a very simple question we're talking about power and counter power social movements negotiation negotiating power so what is it that keeps us as a social and digital society together what is the kind of glue between us in a digital age Oh simple question they fundamentally the sharing of values the sharing of values and the tolerance to share these values in other words if we have different systems of valuation life different systems between what produces equality or not in society if we do not agree on some fundamental principles sharing these principles and making sure that everybody except the idea that are being translated into practice then there is a breakdown of the basic social solidarity for instance the European Union is largely disintegrating the most important thing is that the European Union when everything went all right and was no major crisis well people accepted some solidarity mechanism let's taking the typical example Germans helping Greek but when things are different when the the issue is that there is costly sources then people who are not like us don't deserve support and therefore the mechanism of support help and solidarity break down well what it's easy to observe between Germany and Greece is also within each country within Greece with in Germany when situation is such that people need support they only they only support those who they consider to be like themselves and that's when a major issue here is that this the rule that could apply to very heavy ethnically socially homogeneous cohesive societies but it doesn't work in multicultural multi class multiracial societies which are most of the European societies nowadays and therefore they the ability to accept common codes of behavior is being challenged by the practice of social inequality in Germany is better in that sense but overall the entire European countries like the United States are reaching staggering levels of economic and social inequality and therefore this dilutes social cohesion because of the idea that everybody agrees on some basic principles is betrayed by the observation that those who have power and resources have increasingly more power and resources and do not care about the weaker segments of the population so it's a process of social fragmentation which is amplified by the internet and that's my point in relation to the internet because if because through the internet everybody has access to information and has access to what's happening and can't debate and can organize discussions in the social networks about the reasons for the inequality and the injustice in society so in a society in which there is consensus internet reinforces consensus in a society in which there's increasing inequality and increasing cleavages between the population and increasing conflict internet amplifies this conflict and therefore contributes to this integrating social cohesion okay we have like five minutes left and they're like 120 questions left so let's choose some of them there's one question about post digital society how could a post digital society look Mad Max or Blade Runner hmm I don't remember the film's as you well can you repeat how could a post digital society look and it refers through the two films Mad Max or Blade Runner and I don't remember them too well so we can't we just have to cut all this kind of reference so what is the poster to the world like well I don't I never frankly I never talk about the future because it's methodological is impossible seriously but I don't want to escape the question in terms of the which is which kind of futures can be imagined I would not call it post digital because digital is a system of communication which is there to stay forever will be deeper and more complex and more extensive forms of digital communication lasts as we cannot say that what happen in a post electricity society we will have electricity that manages everything but the issue I think it's not what it's about what which kind of new forms of social existence are being formed well the easy answer is the new institutions and new forms of social existence if those that will be constructed and developed by the humans in terms of their own societies and that ultimately will be determined in terms of power relationships in terms of who and the negotiations between those who exercise power and those criticized country power as always has been in history but if we see now in following this methodology if we see the current connections could we observe is I mean the more we develop our technological capacity the more we observe a huge gap between our technological power and our capacity to live together and our capacity to tolerate each other and our capacity to correct in justices and to correct inequalities institutionally speaking and so we are moving we have been moving in the last ten years and we continue to move toward in an increasingly violent conflicted world among other things because we are all related in the planet now the so-called globalization is simply a networking of all the global melrose in every domain of life we are together but we are separated by religion by ethnicity by institutions by democratic institutions by class by levels of development and we do not have the mechanism to negotiate these dramatic conflicts because the nation-states are defenders of their own interests and not offenders of the overall interests of humanity and the United Nations has never been anything else but the expression of the power of the network of the nation-states themselves so the gap between our technological capacity and our institutional and moral capacity to manage the problems is increasing and the worst possible scenario is how to unleash this incredible technological power for instance transforming human nature per se and the weak ethical and institutional capacity to move toward a common well-being rather toward the specific interest of groups who are the most powerful this is the issue so at the end let's come back to the focus of the series which is a European focus and we talked about it in the introduction in the talk do you think we should develop a specifically European perspective on digital society and what could it be made of no and frankly I to start with I don't think is such a thing as Europe to start saying that's my latest book published a week ago is called the crisis of Europe and shows why the European Union is disintegrating breaks it is only the beginning the idea of a united Europe of a sharing project review was a wonderful idea that I always supported as a personal citizen but what we observed is the contrary is the fracturing of Europe and the inability of Europe to act as one single entity among other thing because we do not have a common European identity what has been common in Europe let be serious the only thing common in Europe has been killing each other for several hundred years including the 20th century that's sad observation but so the idea of creating a European project requires developing a common practice a common practice of being Europeans we think like share labor market share cultural education listed users share media systems but the only thing we have common Europe is what we have with the rest of the world which is precisely the uses of Internet the European Union that's hell I mean some what a joint Internet policy so some forms of economic and technological policy can be European that that would be the perspective but not the digital society because the digital society in an extremely diverse social situation as is the case of Europe has different expression and different forms but Europe does have some commonality in terms of the Internet related digital policies which commonality there is a much stronger emphasis on the public interest than for instance in the United States there is somewhat more protection of privacy and of citizens rights in Europe so there are a number of things in the values of Europe which are widely accepted in the population which make it for a more humane and decent form of entering a new technological age no question about that and that would be some to some extent the superiority of Europe over other areas and nations in the world so in that sense a European perspective is European it is the attempt to have a control of the technological transformation closer to the values and interest of people's lives ok so you're an optimist and pessimist at the same time that life we have come to our last part of the evening and this last part is called the quest and it's a questionnaire and it will be the same questionnaire for every guest of the series and of course we hope for different answers from everyone or no answer or no answer at all that's possible as well and short answers of course and this is how it works I start the sentence and you finish it no I don't play games it's it's science it's a questionnaire yeah okay man you made the questionnaire but they can't okay we will see if you don't like the question you don't answer if you like it you answer okay no because I don't like the method you like the method huh what is your method the make of this would you just express okay particularly we thought preap with a previous warning hmm yeah that's what voting should be some nice twenty any attention later no no that should be in this petition continuous no I hippies spontaneous the whole evening that's you yeah but you are not being spontaneous that is your questions are not a spontaneous so why should give a spontaneous answers to non spontaneous questions that's a good question first with you it's gonna make better the game I may ask you the questions and then you respond and then we discover my god this is like let's try the first one okay because this is a fun one if I had the chance to reinvent the internet I would these are problem that's a question that they raised for myself or I have never had this place we entering that the realm of fantasy and power and you have the power to do everything you want within that question I don't so okay I'd imagine so thank you sorry about that because I have great respect for you of that top gimmicks know that you're a wonderful person and moderator and everything but I can have a drink together rather than thanks for this Christmas Thank You medium for your work we of course want to thank you that oh yes of course why not we are happy you're here and we wanted to give you present from Berlin and since we are not exactly a wine region and we cannot compete with great Spanish wines this is a leader like foodie package little things nice things to eat from Berlin and thank you very much for being here and coming thank you very much for your understanding so you are very much invited to stay here for a drink and the next chance to get more of the European perspective is the 30th of January our next guest will be Christophe no Berger a communicational scientist and professor and we would be very happy to see you again and right now because we have so many questions left you asked of course you can stay for a drink outside there at the panorama bar and have a real life chat with us and with manuel castells thank you very much muchas gracias [Applause]

3 thoughts on “Manuel Castells: Power and counter-power in the digital society

  1. Did you enjoy Manuel Castells' talk on power and counter-power in the digital society? Be sure to check out our playlist, Making sense of the digital society, for even more discussion on similar topics by clicking here:

    And don't forget to visit to see all upcoming events at the Alexander von Humboldt Institut für Internet und Gesellschaft!

  2. Can we share this video on our local community TV channels in Humboldt County California, USA?

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