4   Key Features of Social Media Surveillance

Daniel Trottier and David Lyon

4.1. INTRODUCTION

A German law governing privacy at the workplace recently made it illegal for bosses to look up prospective employees on Facebook (Jolly 2010). In doing so this law attempts to restrict Facebook’s presence in the job hiring process and illustrates one of the many ways in which social media have surveillance dimensions. The rapid uptake of social media as well as their spread into virtually every social realm prompts such action in a number of spheres.

Social media refers to a set of web-based services that enable users to share content with each other. Many of these sites are used to exchange specific kinds of media: YouTube for videos, Flickr for photographs, ...

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