Watch: Enemy of the State (Scott, 1998)
Reading: Munster, Anna. “Welcome to Google Earth.” Critical Digital Studies: A Reader. Toronto: University of Toronto Printing Press, 2008. Print.
As I began shifting into my units about copyright infringement I wanted to look at some of the good and bad aspects of technology’s infringement on our privacy. While a decade ago Enemy of the State (1998) seemed a like a bit of a conspiracy theory movie, the digital mapping technology that was imagined ten years ago is now a reality with Google Earth and even Google Street View within its Maps application. Munster’s article helps to tie this in with theoretical questions about Google Earth’s position as a simulated world and whether or not we should consider this virtual earth as more than a map. Google Earth is an interactive virtual environment where users can go, and see a representation of our own Earth as well as leave tags and information that other users can then read and edit themselves. This gives Google Earth a lot in common with the social media websites that I examined at the beginning of the term.
Edited: January 11th, 2010