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After Snowden, Users Too Scared to Post Anti-Gov Opinions. Mission Accomplished?

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posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 07:26 AM
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i found a study that's got me thinking.

snowden initially discloses that the nsa is watching everybody in the whole world, but especially americans. there's some outrage, but a surprising lack of public reaction overall. later, he disclosed the kind of american the nsa takes a special interest in, and the criteria turn out to be broad enough to include your hippie activist little sister, your tea-party gramma, and your friend who uses tor. again, not much reaction. widespread apathy is blamed.

but what if the non-reaction wasn't? what if there was a reaction, and that reaction was silent fear?

and what if that might have been the intent of disclosure all along?


Around 86% of people surveyed for the study - which questioned 1,801 US adults in August and September last year - said that they were willing to have an in-person conversation about the surveillance program, but only 42% of Facebook and Twitter users were willing to post about it online.


what if the nsa TOLD us we are being watched, knowing full well what the public reaction would be?

either way, the upshot post-snowden is that we CENSOR OURSELVES, which saves the nsa (and the interests they represent) a hell of a lot of trouble.


Professor Keith Hampton, one of the co-authors of the report, warned that the findings suggested a lack of public discussion on important issues.

"This kind of self-censoring can mean that important information is never shared," Hampton said. "Some had hoped that social media might provide new outlets that encourage more discussion and the exchange of a wider range of opinions. But we see the opposite - a spiral of silence exists online, too."


i ask again, MISSION ACCOMPLISHED?




posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 07:36 AM
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a reply to: ATODASO

I'd imagine it's a lot easier to tract threats to the government when you're watching people who don't know they are being watched.

I have no doubt the practical effect of Snowden is self-censorship. But the downside to the government is that the real crazies just go further underground, making them harder to find.

It would be a dumb mission if that were really the plan.


edit on 28-8-2014 by loam because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 07:44 AM
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a reply to: loam

"real crazies?" they're not underground, they're just as vocal as ever. they've got websites you don't need to go on the deep web to visit, and they're actively recruiting no matter who's watching.

and i think the article is correct, most people assumed that this would open up dialogue, not shut it down. it's counter-intuitive until you take into account the sinister "spiral of silence" effect.

disclosure of a project of that scale was inevitable, so it makes sense to control how the information is released and gauge the effects. the "spiral of silence" effect was already known, and there are holes large enough in snowden's story to drive a mrap through. i guess i can knock together a post on that, if anyone's interested.

i think it's brilliant, actually, to take advantage of a passive effect.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 07:46 AM
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Let's test it out. F# the NSA!

If you don't hear from me again then maybe there is something to fear. If I'm still here after a few days then this article is blowing smoke.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 07:50 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

no offense, but you missed the point of the article. whether or not the nsa would act on someone voicing an unpopular opinion, the perception that they MIGHT is enough to shut most people up.

also, it's based on a study that's blowing hard data, not smoke, bud.


edit on 28-8-2014 by ATODASO because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 07:54 AM
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Yup, mission accomplished. Notice that it's becoming less and less acceptable since Assange/Snowden to suggest that conspiracies are at work in government, despite the plain fact that some of the craziest conspiracy theories ever pondered have turned out to be absolutely true.
Broad reaching, intrusive surveillance of normal citizens, across international borders using state of the art data retrieval techniques with the unfettered compliance of public corporations. It's monstrous.

Public reaction: Weird Al Yankovic song about tin foil hatters.

I try not thinking about it too much, 'cause of my ulcers.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 07:55 AM
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Its the bubbles people have gotten used to. No ones talking about it so they don't think to bring it up.

My friends and I have great discussions over the phone that has us laughing about what the NSA would think about it.

Here's an example. It was by text.
Friend : wyd?
Me: watching bro shoot people
Friend : call me after

Her husband picked up her phone later and was like ftw?! That's fun for them?! I almost peed I was laughing so hard. My lil bro was playing COD and it wasn't my turn. Let someone try to figure out half the things I type without details.

Once we swore we heard someone coughing on the phone that wasn't at either of our houses.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 07:56 AM
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Have you ever went to write something whether it be anti NSA or similar and
then thought "maybe I shouldn't write this" even in a private message?

Because I'll be honest I have, sometimes I'm more paranoid than others.

Not that I'm up to no good just the sense of what the OP is about, even the threat of being caught
can almost be as good as being caught if the result is the same.

it's like an invisible filter.
edit on 28/8/2014 by Taggart because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 07:58 AM
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ATS membership is still increasing each day, with very vocal members discussing government abuse and cover-ups.
If anything, I think the whole Snowdon thing has empowered more people to speak out against governments, and the internet seems to be a favorite place to voice ones' opinion.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:00 AM
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a reply to: Unresponsible

/passes the pepto bismol

thanks for speaking up, bud. i knew this thread was going to go down like a bad burrito. the machine has been selling snowden as a hero hardest to the people who are most likely to be upset over surveillance, so i didn't expect to make much headway here.

but so long as my balls and my keyboard remain intact, i'll say what i damn well please.




edit on 28-8-2014 by ATODASO because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:03 AM
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It's funny, here in Britain I was brought up to believe Guy Fawkes was a bad man. The propaganda worked when I was a kid. Now I see the true nature of politics and the human condition and would happily bring down the houses of parliament.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:05 AM
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originally posted by: nugget1
ATS membership is still increasing each day, with very vocal members discussing government abuse and cover-ups.
If anything, I think the whole Snowdon thing has empowered more people to speak out against governments, and the internet seems to be a favorite place to voice ones' opinion.


ats is a bubble. it's a great bubble, and i've really enjoyed my short time here, but it doesn't represent the views or online behavior of the majority of internet users.

i'll reiterate the findings of that study. since snowden, 86% of people will tell you how they feel about controversial issues in person, but less than half feel comfortable expressing that opinion online.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:08 AM
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originally posted by: Iamthatbish
Its the bubbles people have gotten used to. No ones talking about it so they don't think to bring it up.


sorry, again, i don't mean to belabor the point, but. the study shows that people aren't just forgetting to talk about this stuff, they feel actively discouraged from doing so because of the promise of observation and the indirect threat of retaliation.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:08 AM
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While people are more vocal now, more joining, etc., they also seem to be more in favor of official Government and administration backed media outlets. Noticed that some members who were not particularity fond of official word questioning, shy off from the site. I wonder if they returned under a different moniker/persona with changed views or just not as vocal about any views. Though, I don't believe it has stopped some people such as in conspiracy circles and in Alt media. Maybe from posting their views on FB but not from other sites.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:15 AM
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Around 86% of people surveyed for the study - which questioned 1,801 US adults in August and September last year - said that they were willing to have an in-person conversation about the surveillance program, but only 42% of Facebook and Twitter users were willing to post about it online.



Ever post anything of any real value on FB?


I have.




posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:17 AM
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The disturbing thing is how long before people stop asking questions and accept their servitude. That time seems quite close, probably already happening.



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:26 AM
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a reply to: SLAYER69

point taken.

but the study also includes twitter, which is where people go to have the heavy conversations.

#ferguson #arabspring #freakingsnowdenbecausewhynot

and don't you think that the huge chunk of people who now feel too frightened to post on fb are probably silenced on all platforms?




edit on 28-8-2014 by ATODASO because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:26 AM
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a reply to: ATODASO

I think the issue is what media one prefers. Many sites went to requiring real names. That has be be significant as well. Also most people do not know how to have a conversation with others that have different views.

In most families there is a refusal to discuss religion or politics. That's with the people they love and trust!



posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:31 AM
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originally posted by: Iamthatbish

In most families there is a refusal to discuss religion or politics. That's with the people they love and trust!


sorry, again, the people who used to talk about politics online don't anymore because they are afraid of the nsa.

i'm posting as a drunk samsquantch, but i know for damn sure that the nsa can and does know exactly who i am, because snowden told me so. i'm just like everybody else in that respect.

where i differ from them is in being too stupid to keep my mouth shut when something bothers me.




posted on Aug, 28 2014 @ 08:43 AM
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Meh .. they can all get stuffed will continue speaking out against the corrupt bastards same as always ..




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