Nonviolent militant resistance to Big Tech only needs a spark, or else nothing will happen

It just takes one single case of nonviolent sabotage of a Big Tech installation, such as a centrally placed 5G tower for example, to force mass media to write about it. But without this spark it’s unlikely that any nonviolent militant resistance movement will ever be mobilized against Big Tech, since resistance must be leaderless and cell-based, which means that (almost) nobody will take the risk of fighting Big Tech if not seeing that others have started combatting Big Tech successfully, without being caught, and without physically harming any human being.

I’m a 70% realist, and 30% idealist, so after having studied or participated in militant subcultures the last 30 years I’ve learned not to expect much from either left- or rightwing radicals. It’s therefore no surprise to see that even the little attention that drone-surveillance.info (DSI) first got on Minds, Gab and Parler has now suddenly (at the beginning of March, 2021) almost fallen to zero.

I assume and guess that NSA or other actors have not “shadow-banned” DSI and not hacked my computer so that I don’t get feedback and don’t see the real numbers of visitors. This assumption might be wrong, cf Messing with the Enemy by Clint Watts, especially because I occasionally notice glitches and anomalies, such as all my three VPNs always giving me a location in Germany even when I choose other locations, giving me search results in German when using a browser.

Ironically, I have personally never worried about surveillance myself. If you decide to become either a militant activist or an intelligence officer you need to have a “Zen” attitude toward being put under the microscope, to be scrutinized (and vetted), and basically have no privacy. It’s part of the game.

The drawback is that when one is relatively noticeable on the radar of the intelligence community (IC), after for example creating a website like drone-surveillance.info, it’s not possible to personally go out and sabotage anything without getting caught. Even those who have just visited the DSI website once should not do anything illegal but only spread the info here to others, through word of mouth, when no smartphone is nearby.

Since it appears, on my screen, that average left- and rightwing radicals are not interested in DSI, not even after the anti-Big Tech “hatred” that erupted when Amazon banned Parler, one can probably assume that it will not be people on Gab, Minds or Parler who one day will attack Big Tech in the future, if such attacks occur at all.

Average radicals will not risk jail as long as they don’t have “nothing to lose”. Reading articles online will not be enough to motivate them. Only real and very painful personal grievances will force average radicals (on Gab, Minds and Parler) to engage in illegal activities that are severely punished if they get caught. Big Tech’s surveillance is not likely to cause such grievances, until it’s too late.

The weakness of leaderless and cell-based resistance is that it can easily become a victim of the “tragedy of the commons“: everybody is just sitting on the fence, observing how common values are threatened (by surveillance), but not acting until many others start to act first.

The internal dynamics in a radical movement or group can also be enough to keep any of its members from acting on the info presented here on DSI. For example, if their leader don’t like me, for some reason, maybe as a result of a rumor started by an intelligence agency, that alone can be enough for some radicals to reject the validity of the arguments published on DSI. The internal struggles and suspicions within militant subcultures make it easy for the IC to mess with them.

If attacks on Big Tech occurs, then I don’t think, at the moment of writing, that nonviolent sabotage will play any (significant) role. If you are working for Big Tech it’s more reasonable to worry about drug cartels, terrorists and (factions within) non-Western intelligence agencies that correctly view omnipresent Big Tech surveillance as an existential threat.

At the moment of writing my basic attitude is the same as when I started DSI: the website is just a message in a bottle floating in cyberspace. Maybe somebody will one day pick it up and deliver it offline to others, until a militant activist, who has never visited DSI, decides to engage in nonviolent sabotage of Big Tech. What’s the chance of that happening? Who knows?

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