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Alexa, Affect, and the Algorithmic Imaginary

Addressing Privacy and Security Concerns Through Emotional Advertising

Linda Kopitz

As millions of customers across the world invite digital voice assistants into their homes, the public debate has increasingly centered on security and privacy concerns connected to the use of the device. Drawing on Tania Bucher’s work at the intersection between technology and everyday experience, this article proposes an understanding of an algorithmic imaginary of Alexa-enabled devices as explicitly nonthreatening in its ordinariness, positive potential, and gendered presence. As a case study, this article uses commercials for Alexa-enabled devices as a starting point: Instead of foregrounding the functionality and thereby the algorithmic intelligence underlying the voice assistant, these commercials focus on an affective potential as a narrative strategy to address privacy and security concerns. By connecting everyday interactions with emotional and empowering narratives, the way Alexa is portrayed as an embodied object functions as a balance to the equally public and publicized understanding of digital voice assistants as threats.

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Autobiography

An Autopsy

Jean-Christophe Menu and Fabrice Neaud

could not reasonably have been classed as an ‘invasion of privacy’, given that all the pages had been pre-published with the consent of the person concerned. Then I was advised against publishing a follow-up, and in any case, I wasn't in any frame of

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‘The Inexhaustible Surface of Things’

Stefano Tamburini's Comic Book Work

Simone Castaldi

with their own eyes and in the privacy of their rooms, the word of God or the thought of philosophers’], 21 the other opening the way for a representation of man as integral part of a mechanically ordered context. But between the eighteenth and

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French Color Blindness in Perspective

The Controversy over "Statistiques Ethniques"

Daniel Sabbagh and Shanny Peer

In the United States, while some race-based policies such as affirmative action have faced often successful political and legal challenges over the last quartercentury, historically, the very principle of official racial classification has met with much less resistance. The Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution’s Fourteenth Amendment, according to which “no state shall deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws,” was not originally intended to incorporate a general rule of “color blindness.” And when in California, in 2003, the “Racial Privacy Initiative” led to a referendum on a measure—Proposition 54—demanding that “the state shall not classify any individual by race, ethnicity, color or national origin,” this restriction was meant to apply exclusively to the operation of public education, public contracting or public employment, that is, the three sites where affirmative action was once in effect and might be reinstated at some point, or so the proponents of that initiative feared. In any case, that measure was roundly defeated at the polls.

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Vincent Pons

This view is expressed by Archon Fung, 19 May 2014, Boston Review , bostonreview.net/forum/saving-privacy/archon-fung-response-saving-privacy">http://www.bostonreview.net/forum/saving-privacy/archon-fung-response-saving-privacy">bostonreview.net/forum/saving-privacy/archon-fung-response-saving-privacy

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Christopher Pittard

tension is comedically explored in stories such as Hamilton’s “Bunter the Detective” (1909), where Billy Bunter’s detective work invades others’ privacy. Bunter proves too inept to be an effectual detective, however, drawing a clear distinction between the

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Disruptive Technology

Social Media from Modiano to Zola and Proust

Elizabeth Emery

innovations in news reporting, from telegrams to lithographs to photographic reproduction, were quickly emulated in France. 12 The interview, for example, was an American import of the 1870s, criticized as a violation of privacy since writers were interviewed

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Introduction

Re-viewing the Past and Facing the Future

Laurence Grove, Anne Magnussen, and Ann Miller

autobiography have been couched, including the issues of ‘decency’ and ‘privacy’, moralising external judgements that have little to do with the pursuit of artistic truth. Neaud lists traits to which he is averse, notably the construction of a series of

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The Alternative for Germany from Breakthrough toward Consolidation?

A Comparative Perspective on Its Organizational Development

E. Gene Frankland

to the internet and privacy issues. The AfD rose in opposition to the established parties’ support of the Eurozone, but soon broadened its focus to immigration and social conservative issues. The founders of both parties favored more direct democracy

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Sanaz Nasirpour

spying, disguised identities and violation of users’ privacy ( Khazraee 2013: 743 ). For instance, in 2014, Masih Alinejad, an Iranian journalist who lives in exile in the United Kingdom, gained international attention following her activism on her