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'The Inhumanist Manifesto', Media Theory, Vol. 1, No.1, 2017.

The Uberfication of the University (Open access Forerunners series version available here; as of April 4 2017 an interactive Manifold series version is available here.)

Públicos Fantasma - La Naturaleza Política Del Libro - La Red (Mexico: Taller de Ediciones Económicas, 2016) - new book, co-authored with Andrew Murphie, Janneke Adema and Alessandro Ludovico. 

'Posthumanities: The Dark Side of "The Dark Side of the Digital"' (with Janneke Adema), in Janneke Adema and Gary Hall, eds, Disrupting the Humanities: Towards Posthumanities, Journal of Electronic PublishingVol. 9, No.2, Winter, 2016.

Open Access

Most of Gary's work is freely available to read and download either here in Media Gifts or in Coventry University's online repository CURVE here 

Radical Open Access 

performative project Janneke Adema has put together, based on our ‘The Political Nature of the Book: On Artists’ Books and Radical Open Access’ article for New Formations, Number 78, Summer, 2013. 

'What Does Academia.edu's Success Mean for Open Access: The Data-Driven World of Search Engines and Social Networking', Ctrl-Z: New Media Philosophy, no.5, 2015.

« Videos from the 'Why Are We Not Boycotting Academia.edu?' symposium now available | Main | How the Internet Economy Changes the Rules »
Thursday
Jan282016

Ubercapitalism

(This is an abstract for a talk to be given at CAMRI, University of Westminster, February 18, 2016. More details of time and place are available here.) 

 

This talk will explore what neoliberalism’s weakening of the social is likely to mean for the future organization of labor by examining those data and information companies associated with the corporate sharing economy. It will focus on the sharing economy because it is here that the implications for workers of such a transformation to an ubercapitalist society are today most apparent. It is a society in which we are encouraged to become not just what the philosopher Michel Foucault calls entrepreneurs of the self (which is how he describes the neoliberal ‘homo oeconomicus’), but microentrepreneurs of the self, acting as if we are our own, precarious, freelance microenterprises in a context in which we are being steadily deprived of employment rights, public services and welfare support. 
 

Our society can be understood as ubercapitalist then in a double sense: in that this form of neoliberal capitalism is seemingly ever more powerful and irresistible (the prefix ‘uber’ actually means ‘advanced’,  ‘irresistible’, ‘higher’, ‘superior’, ‘more powerful’); and that the San Francisco-based sharing economy firm Uber provides one of its most characteristic and often referred to examples. Indeed, having become a ‘global brand largely on the strength of its intellectual property and without a need to manufacture anything’, Fortune magazine predicts Uber is ‘destined to be one of the world’s most important companies’.

This talk will discuss the implications of such a transformation to an ubercapitalist society for the organization of labor particularly through the prism of those who work and study in the university. It will do so partly because academics, researchers and students are now being encouraged to become microentrepreneurs of themselves; but mainly because the university provides one of the few spaces in post-industrial society where the forces of contemporary neoliberalism’s anti-public sector regime are still being overtly opposed. It follows that such changes in the way labor is organized will be all the more powerfully and visibly marked in the case of the publically funded university system. Indeed if, as recent research reveals, being an academic is one of the most desired jobs in Britain today, it may be because this occupation is seen as offering a way of living that is not just about consuming and working and very little else. In this way, Ubercapitalism will provide a sense of what is lying in store for many us over the course of the next few years - and what we can do about it.

 

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