Informit article: Surveil and commodify: Twenty years of google

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Abstract:

The second of three articles in the twentieth-anniversary year of Google: advertising for monopoly power.

Google’s system of surveillance-fuelled automated advertising is highly effective, as noted in part one of this series (Arena Magazine no. 153). In part two here, I shall look more closely at the intertwined processes of surveillance and commodification, for herein lies the secret to Google’s tremendous success. Advertising provides the company with most of its enormous revenue, but as advertisers provide Google with most of the revenue that funds its operations, it is crucially important to understand how the process of profit extraction works. This sits at the centre of the reproduction and augmentation of Google”s cybernetic power strategy. The patterns of this process can be seen in virtually everything the firm does.

Details / PDF:

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