World Subjectright Foundation

  title={Subjectright, The Journal of Medical Knowledge Management,
         Physician's Computing Chronicle},
  author={Steve Mann},
  year={April 2001}

Position Statement

(World Subjectrights Day: December 24th, is a worldwide day of protest against video surveillance.)

Pervasive computing and ubiquitous surveillance have reached into nearly all facets of our daily lives. Identification cards are required for more and more things, and often pictures taken for the ID cards are warehoused for sale in large databases without our knowledge or consent.

Sheraton Hotel's management (Boston) recorded video of workers as they changed clothes in the company locker room. They alleged that they suspected employee drug use.

Surveillance cameras and automated imaging systems, sensors, etc., are being made in ever smaller packages, with increasing automation. Thus it is getting easier and easier to capture image content without the need of a skilled photographer or system operator.

The failure of leglislation (e.g. a U.S. Senate bill requiring employers to inform workers about cameras in bathrooms or locker rooms was attacked Congress and the business community) and the failure of various privacy initiatives, suggest a new approach is needed.

Although traditional beliefs in freedom of expression and privacy are important concepts, the new fundamental concept introduced by World Subjectright Foundation is Subjectrights (see some rough notes on various writings related to subjectrights) which pertains to ownership of data by the subject depicted or described by the data.

See EXISTech Corporation's satire on the concept of ``privacy'' (e.g. exposing ``privacy'' as a weak and ineffectual concept).

See also, the GAS STOVE ANALOGY to better understand the point being made by the above satire on the concept of ``privacy''.

Two kinds of Subjectrights

Subjectright (S) is distinct from Copyright (C).

Subjectright pertains to ownership of data by the subject depicted or described by the data. In this context, Subjectright protects and defends that which privacy has failed to protect and defend.

However, there is also another kind of subjectright, to address the broader (though previously ineffectual) notion of privacy as the ``right to be left alone'' and to make an important distinction that otherwise conflates two disparate but important concepts. (See an essay on problems with privacy as a concept, especially when we acquiesce to having our data stolen and only constrain how it is used.)

There are two distinct kinds of Subjectrights:

Subjectrights are licensed through two distinct kinds of Subjectright Agreements:

Implementation of Subjectrights

Here are some links to Subjectrights resources you can use in order to put Subjectrights philosophy into direct immedate action:

To declare a picture of yourself as Subjectright (denoted as circle S, or ``S'' in parentheses), insert a designation of the form: Subjectright (S) by __________ (insert your name as name of the person appearing in picture). You can take a look at examples of articles containing material protected by Subjectright.

Taming the monster with a piece of itself

The original methodology in defending subjectrights has been to use algorithmic control (e.g. to become a machine) in order to defend against algorithmically controlled people (e.g. clerks).

Why the word THEFT is used so much in Subjectrights

Opinion piece: surveillance is theft

See an article on this topic, e.g.

Also, in it has been asked why we more moderate terminology is not used, to which a reply was given.

What is Subjectright (S)?

How to join World Subjectrights Foundation

In addition to being a scholarly pursuit, World Subjectrights Foundation is also a practical organization. Membership is free of cost but requires participation in the general spirit of World Subjectrights Foundation's goals. (People are also needed to help with Subjectrights initiatives.)

Membership is by invitation. Basically you show why you feel you've helped to expand the concept of Subjectrights by asserting such rights, for consideration on being adding to the free membership list.

Here are some possible ideas:

In addition to simply spreading the concept of Subjectrights through usage and continual assertion of these rights, there are some specific benefits of joining World Subjectrights Foundation.

Why the word "Subject"?

The word "Subject" calls to mind many things that pertain to these ideas: SUBJECT sub.ject Etymology: from Latin subjectus one under authority... past participle of subicere to subject, literally, to throw under, from sub- + jacere to throw Date: 14th century 1 : one that is placed under authority or control: as a : VASSAL b (1) : one subject to a monarch and governed by the monarch's law (2) : one who lives in the territory of, enjoys the protection of, and owes allegiance to a sovereign power or state synonym see CITIZEN Date: 14th century 1 : owing obedience or allegiance to the power or dominion of another Date: 14th century 1 a : to bring under control or dominion : SUBJUGATE b : to make (as oneself) amenable to the discipline and control of a superior 3 : to cause or force to undergo or endure (something unpleasant, inconvenient, or trying) - sub.jec.tion /s&b-'jek-sh&n/ noun Main Entry: short subject Function: noun

Why all this writing looks like a legal document

Essentially society tells us that the activist has 3 choices: take no action; take legal action; or take illegal action. Therefore if you're active, you must be one of either a lawyer, or a criminal.

Audio video comparison:

A photographer and an audiographer both record a live musician playing.

For some strange reason, the photographer has the rights in the pictures, whereas the subject (the musician) has the rights in the sound.

What is needed is a harmonization of media (audio, video, etc.).

Self ownership or ownership by others:

Pronunciation:  'ka-t[^&]l
Function:       noun plural
Etymology:      Middle English catel, from Old North French, personal property, 
from Medieval Latin capitale, from Latin, neuter of capitalis of the head --
more at CAPITAL
Date:   14th century
1 : domesticated quadrupeds held as property or raised for use; specifically:
    bovine animals on a farm or ranch
2 : human beings especially en masse
Pronunciation:  'cha-t[^&]l
Function:       noun
Etymology:      Middle English chatel property, from Middle French, from Medieval Latin capitale -- more at CATTLE
Date:   14th century

Dr. S. Mann,
Assistant Mailroom Clerk,
EXISTech Corporation.

Copyleft, right, and center (c) by EXISTech Corp.