An artist’s use of photography to stick it to the man
Asim Rafiqui brings to our attention the response of Hasan Elahi, a Bangaldeshi-born American citizen, to government suspicion and the FBI’s unwillingness to remove him from the “watch-list”.
Since 2002, Elahi has monitored his own movements on his website Trackingtranscience.net
Elahi posts his day, every single mundane aspect of it. A globe-trotting Professor of media, he posts all his activities, complete with GPS coordinates and the date/time stamps at the site, effectively monitoring his daily life. His meals, toilet breaks, airport waits and almost all the mundane acts that define 99% of what constitutes modern life. His server logs reveal that the Pentagon, and even the Executive Office of The President have clicked in while the FBI continue to monitor his activities through this site itself. Our tax payer’s money at work.
Pictured below, Elahi’s toilet breaks.
Two years ago, Elahi appeared on the Colbert Report and explained that if 300 million Americans did this, the FBI would have to employ millions of agents just to keep up with the data flood. Subversive, funny and the best type of protest … except he’s left with no privacy.
Hasan M. Elahi is an interdisciplinary media artist with an emphasis on technology and media and their social implications. His research interests include issues of surveillance, sousveillance, simulated time, transport systems, and borders and frontiers. Elahi is currently an Associate Professor at the University of Maryland. He previously taught at San Jose State University; Rutgers; the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida; West Virginia University; Wanganui School of Design, in Wanganui, New Zealand; and also in Houston, Texas.
Elahi’s own site – http://elahi.umd.edu/
The Visible Man: An FBI Target Puts His Whole Life Online, Wired.com, by Clive Thompson, 05.22.07.
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Found via Andrew Jackson’s Writtenbylight blog