Power loves to hold information on its subjects. This was the theme of a speech given by Professor Daniele Archibugi on the topic of the rights to privacy and information, state secrecy and surveillance. Speaking at European Alternatives’ CREATE|REACT Digital training in Berlin, Professor Archibugi contrasted state surveillance in the DDR, which aimed not only to watch, but also to let people know that they were being watched, with the new forms of surveillance that are conducted in secret and only exposed by whistle-blowers.
In light of the revelations on state surveillance and ongoing concerns about transparency and the right to information in the TTIP negotiations, the rights to privacy and information are threatened in the EU, with national security and foreign relations arguments being used by governments to limit rights protection. European Alternatives is part of a movement amongst civil society and human rights activists to push back against these challenges to fundamental rights and to campaign for strengthened rights protection in Europe.