Interview: Surveillance Valley in Brazil's Folha de S.Paulo

I was interviewed in Folha de S.Paulo by Fernanda Ezabella about Surveillance Valley and the origins of the Internet.

I don't claim to understand Portuguese, but I can barely make out the headline, which has the words "internet," "umbilical" and "Forcas Armadas." That I can understand!

One thing that I've come to realize is that reporters outside America are much more willing to question the fundamental mythology of the Internet, and to see it as an instrument of American imperial power. They don't immediately recoil from this idea, as American media types are known to do. That makes a lot of sense.

To Americans, the Internet is an organic part of American culture. To everyone else, it's a technology that came from abroad — from the most powerful country in the world — and wrapped itself around everything. Their Internet might have local memes, but the structure of the system is still dominated by American companies and American economic, cultural and political forces.

The empire can seen much more clearly from outside the center.

Anyway, thank you to Fernanda Ezabella from the thoughtful questions.

—Yasha Levine

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