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  1. What Edward Snowden Can Teach Theorists of Conscientious Law-Breaking.William E. Scheuerman - 2016 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 42 (10):958-964.
    The article recalls the triple-pronged normative structure of familiar liberal democratic theorists of civil disobedience, who argued that conscientious law-breaking should rest on political, moral and legal claims. In opposition to a certain tendency among recent theoreticians of civil disobedience to reduce this complex multi-pronged normativity to one or two prongs, I use the case of Edward Snowden’s whistle-blowing to illustrate and defend the triple-pronged approach. In particular, any sound as well as effective model of civil disobedience needs to highlight (...)
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  • A Justification of Whistleblowing.Daniele Santoro & Manohar Kumar - 2017 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 43 (7):669-684.
    Whistleblowing is the act of disclosing information from a public or private organization in order to reveal cases of corruption that are of immediate or potential danger to the public. Blowing the whistle involves personal risk, especially when legal protection is absent, and charges of betrayal, which often come in the form of legal prosecution under treason laws. In this article we argue that whistleblowing is justified when disclosures are made with the proper intent and fulfill specific communicative constraints in (...)
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  • The Democratic Drama of Whistleblowing.Thomas Olesen - 2018 - European Journal of Social Theory 21 (4):508-525.
    While major cases of whistleblowing may not be an everyday occurrence, their effects are often wide-ranging, celebrated, and controversial. Given this potent cocktail, the whistleblower is conspicuously undertheorized within sociology and social theory. Research today takes place mainly within management, business, psychology, law, and public administration studies. While some of this work does draw on sociological theory, we lack a general theory that combines attention to the historical context of whistleblowing, the nature of its critique and intervention, and the democratic (...)
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  • On (Not) Accepting the Punishment for Civil Disobedience.Piero Moraro - 2018 - Philosophical Quarterly 68 (272):503-520.
    Many believe that a citizen who engages in civil disobedience is not exempt from the sanctions that apply to standard law-breaking conduct. Since he is responsible for a deliberate breach of the law, he is also liable to punishment. Focusing on a conception of responsibility as answerability, I argue that a civil disobedient is responsible (i.e. answerable) to his fellows for the charges of wrongdoing, yet he is not liable to punishment merely for breaching the law. To support this claim, (...)
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  • Anonymity, Fidelity to Law, and Digital Civil Disobedience.Wulf Loh - forthcoming - Philosophy and Social Criticism.
    Making use of the liberal concept of civil disobedience, this paper assesses, under which circumstances instances of illegal digital protest—called “hacktivism”—can be justified vis-à-vis the pro t...
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  • Anonymity, Fidelity to Law, and Digital Civil Disobedience.Wulf Loh - forthcoming - Philosophy and Social Criticism.
    Making use of the liberal concept of civil disobedience, this paper assesses, under which circumstances instances of illegal digital protest—called “hacktivism”—can be justified vis-à-vis the pro t...
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  • Government Surveillance, Privacy, and Legitimacy.Peter Königs - 2022 - Philosophy and Technology 35 (1):1-22.
    The recent decades have seen established liberal democracies expand their surveillance capacities on a massive scale. This article explores what is problematic about government surveillance by democracies. It proceeds by distinguishing three potential sources of concern: the concern that governments diminish citizens’ privacy by collecting their data, the concern that they diminish their privacy by accessing their data, and the concern that the collected data may be used for objectionable purposes. Discussing the meaning and value of privacy, the article argues (...)
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  • Are Dissenters Epistemically Arrogant?Tine Hindkjaer Madsen - 2021 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 15 (1):1-23.
    “One who elects to serve mankind by taking the law into his own hands thereby demonstrates his conviction that his own ability to determine policy is superior to democratic decision making. [Defendants’] professed unselfish motivation, rather than a justification, actually identifies a form of arrogance which organized society cannot tolerate.” Those were the words of Justice Harris L. Hartz at the sentencing hearing of three nuns convicted of trespassing and vandalizing government property to demonstrate against U.S. foreign policy. Citizens engaging (...)
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  • Was Snowden Virtuous?Clive Harfield - 2021 - Ethics and Information Technology 23 (3):373-383.
    Professor Shannon Vallor’s theoretical framework of technomoral virtue ethics identifies character traits that can be cultivated to foster a future worth wanting in an environment of emerging technologies. Such technologies and increased citizen participation in the new digital environment have reconfigured what is possible in policing and intelligence-gathering more quickly, perhaps, than sober and sensible policy reflection and formulation can keep pace with. Sensational and dramatic, seismic and devastating, the Snowden disclosures represent a particular expression of dissent against American intelligence (...)
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  • Secrecy, Transparency and Government Whistleblowing.William H. Harwood - 2017 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 43 (2):164-186.
    In the first part of the 21st century, the complicated relationship between transparency and security reached a boiling point with revelations of extra-judicial CIA activities, near universal NSA monitoring and unprecedented whistleblowing – and prosecution of whistleblowers under the Espionage Act. This article examines the dual necessities of security and transparency for any democracy, and the manner in which whistleblowers radically saddle this Janus-faced relationship. Then I will move to contemporary examples of whistleblowing, showing how and why some prove more (...)
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  • Internet Surveillance After Snowden.Christian Fuchs & Daniel Trottier - 2017 - Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society 15 (4):412-444.
    Purpose This paper aims to present results of a study that focused on the question of how computer and data experts think about Internet and social media surveillance after Edward Snowden’s revelations about the existence of mass-surveillance systems of the Internet such as Prism, XKeyscore and Tempora. Computer and data experts’ views are of particular relevance because they are confronted day by day with questions about the processing of personal data, privacy and data protection. Design/methodology/approach The authors conducted two focus (...)
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  • The Morality of Treason.Cécile Fabre - 2020 - Law and Philosophy 39 (4):427-461.
    Treason is one of the most serious legal offences that there are, in most if not all jurisdictions. Laws against treason are rooted in deep-seated moral revulsion about acts which, in the political realm, are paradigmatic examples of breaches of loyalty. Yet, it is not altogether clear what treason consists in: someone’s traitor is often another’s loyalist. In this paper, my aim is twofold: to offer a plausible conceptual account of treason, and to partly rehabilitate traitors. I focus on informational (...)
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  • Civil Disobedience.Candice Delmas - 2016 - Philosophy Compass 11 (11):681-691.
    Many historical and recent forms of protest usually referred to as civil disobedience do not fit the standard philosophical definition of “civil disobedience”. The moral and political importance of this point is explained in section 1, and two theoretical lessons are drawn: one, we should broaden the concept of civil disobedience, and two, we should start thinking about uncivil disobedience. Section 2 is devoted to the main objections against, and theorists' defenses of, civil disobedience.
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  • Theorizing the Politics of Protest: Contemporary Debates on Civil Disobedience.Çiğdem Çıdam, William E. Scheuerman, Candice Delmas, Erin R. Pineda, Robin Celikates & Alexander Livingston - 2020 - Contemporary Political Theory 19 (3):513-546.
  • Civil Disobedience and Conscientious Objection.Maeve Cooke & Danielle Petherbridge - 2016 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 42 (10):953-957.
    The question of civil disobedience has preoccupied philosophical discourse at least since Thoreau's articulation of disobedience as a form of non-compliance and Rawls' classic definition outlined in the wake of the civil rights and student protest movements of the 1960s. It has become increasingly clear, however, that these classic definitions are being challenged and rethought from a variety of traditions in the wake of contemporary protests. These articles engage with the most recent debates surrounding civil disobedience and conscientious objection, opening (...)
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  • Theories of Whistleblowing.Emanuela Ceva & Michele Bocchiola - 2020 - Philosophy Compass 15 (1).
    Whistleblowing” has entered the scholarly and the public debate as a way of describing the exposure by the member of an organization of episodes of corruption, fraud, or general abuses of power within the organization. We offer a critical survey of the main normative theories of whistleblowing in the current debate in political philosophy, with the illustrative aid of one of the epitomic figures of a whistleblower of our time: Edward Snowden. After conceptually separating whistleblowing from other forms of wrongdoing (...)
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  • Leaks and the Limits of Press Freedom.Eric R. Boot - 2019 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 22 (2):483-500.
    Political philosophical work on whistleblowing has thus far neglected the role of journalists. A curious oversight, given that the whistleblower’s objective - informing the public about government wrongdoing - can typically not be realized without the media. The present article, therefore, aims to start remedying this neglect by exploring some of the most pressing questions. Accordingly, the paper will be structured as follows: Section 1 will explain why the authorities have treated whistleblowers far more harshly than the journalists who publish (...)
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  • The Ethics of Whistleblowing: Creating a New Limit on Intelligence Activity.Ross W. Bellaby - 2018 - Journal of International Political Theory 14 (1):60-84.
    One of the biggest challenges facing modern societies is how to monitor one’s intelligence community while maintaining the necessary level of secrecy. Indeed, while some secrecy is needed for mission success, too much has allowed significant abuse. Moreover, extending this secrecy to democratic oversight actors only creates another layer of unobserved actors and removes the public scrutiny that keeps their power and decision-making in check. This article will therefore argue for a new type of oversight through a specialised ethical whistleblowing (...)
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  • Ethics of Resistance in Organisations: A Conceptual Proposal.Ozan Nadir Alakavuklar & Fahreen Alamgir - 2018 - Journal of Business Ethics 149 (1):31-43.
    This study suggests a conceptual proposal to analyse the ethics of resistance in organisations, drawing on Foucault’s practising self as a refusal and Schaffer’s ethics of freedom in opposition to the legitimacy of managerial control and the ethics of compliance. We argue that ethics is already part of such politics in the form of ethico-politics on the basis of participation in political action in organisations. Hence, the practising self as resistance in the face of the status quo of managerial power (...)
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  • Civil Disobedience.Kimberley Brownlee & Candice Delmas - 2021 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
  • Civil Disobedience, Costly Signals, and Leveraging Injustice.Ten-Herng Lai - 2020 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 7:1083-1108.
    Civil disobedience, despite its illegal nature, can sometimes be justified vis-à-vis the duty to obey the law, and, arguably, is thereby not liable to legal punishment. However, adhering to the demands of justice and refraining from punishing justified civil disobedience may lead to a highly problematic theoretical consequence: the debilitation of civil disobedience. This is because, according to the novel analysis I propose, civil disobedience primarily functions as a costly social signal. It is effective by being reliable, reliable by being (...)
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  • Is Hacktivism the New Civil Disobedience?Candice Delmas - 2018 - Raisons Politiques 69 (1):63-81.
    Is hactivism the new civil disobedience? I argue that most recent hacktivism isn't, and shouldn't be shoehorned into the category of civil disobedience. I sketch instead a broad matrix of electronic resistance, attentive to the many shapes and goals of hacktivism and I locate five clusters on it, briefly sketching possible dimensions of normative assessment for each: vigilantism, whistleblowing, guerrilla communication, electronic humanitarianism, and electronic civil disobedience.
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