April 2022, Volume 33, Issue 2
International spying and digital subversion used to be the province of governments. Now anyone who has the cash can order hi-tech snooping and surveillance. This is a threat to the future of freedom.
January 2019, Volume 30, Issue 1
Not so long ago, the internet was being lauded as a force for greater freedom and democracy. With the rise of intrusive and addictive social media, however, a discomfiting reality has set in.
July 2015, Volume 26, Issue 3
Rosy assumptions once held that the Internet would inevitably undermine unfree regimes. A look around the world today, however, indicates that something very different and far more disturbing is going on.
In recent years, as leading authoritarian countries such as China, Iran, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Venezuela have become emboldened within the global arena, challenging the liberal international political order, the advanced democracies have retreated rather than responding to this threat.
"Liberation technology" can help mobilize citizen protest and oust autocracies. Authoritarians can also use technology to stifle protest and target dissenters. Who will win the technological race between "netizens" demanding freedom and authoritarians determined to stay in power?