Dangers of little knowledge

In mid-May, one of the blogs on Daily Kos posted on The dangers of Social Network Analysis, arguing that the field of SNA is a direct threat to democracy. There's even an online poll.

The gist of the argument is that being able to identify important actors (i.e., critical nodes) in society is a powerful political tool. This is certainly true, but really - it's nothing new. What appears to be new is the wholesale data mining of domestic phonecalls, which the NSA is using SNA to allegedly identify meaningful (and threatening) patterns.

Whether this is a good idea or not is a separate issue - but the idea that democracy is threatened by knowledge of society seems a bit absurd to me. But that's just me, I guess.

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