‘Radical Indifference’: How Surveillance Capitalism Conquered Our Lives

‘Radical Indifference’: How Surveillance Capitalism Conquered Our Lives

Credit: Chris Yang/Unsplash

When Shoshana Zuboff returns my call 15 minutes late, it’s because her previous call with an organization in Israel dropped halfway through and it took them a while to reconnect. Such is the peril of functioning in quarantine, even as tech companies exert more power than ever. 

Rather than having time over the summer to reflect and plan her next book as she intended, Zuboff has been very busy with people wanting to speak with her and do virtual events. It’s part of the reason that for the last four months we’ve been trying to schedule a call, only to have the date repeatedly pushed back.

Birds are chirping in the background as we speak over the phone, part of the ambience of Zuboff’s home in the country. She says she’s lucky to be there, given the challenges her friends face balancing COVID-19 and living in cities. The birds beat the dystopian jingle of ice cream trucks as they rove New York City, looking for customers amid a pandemic. 

“Pandemic life just takes so much time,” she says. “Between figuring out how to get groceries and everything else, it is just so painstaking.”

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