Hvem er hvem? En eksperimental filosofisk undersøgelse af digitale datasubjekters genspejlende identitetsproduktion og ejerskab

Oliver Anton Lunow Nielsen

Student thesis: Master thesis


This thesis seeks to investigate how digital actions and their appearance deploy new questions onto our notion of being a Being. More specifically, this thesis develops its own methodology – the reproduction analysis – in order to comprehend the relationship between datasubjects and their respective subjects, a Being which datasubjects attempt to be accountable for. With the reproduction analysis in hand, the philosophical experiment emerges and thus tries to assemble the most precise cartographies of five different datasubjects. In doing so, the thesis confronts its receptively five subjects to the data, which refer to their names – asking how the representation and experience of the datasubject forms each individual strategy for governance.
Taking departure in this experiment I am able to observe, how datasubjects demand a positioning which continue to have no position to point at. Consequently, it requires subjects to strategically perform oneself in order to navigate through this complex digital environment. While on one hand subjects are forced towards digitalization, our commonsense knowledge also demands subjects to consciously reflect upon their own digital control, thus creating more paradoxes for being a Being within the digital. Furthermore, the thesis shows how datasubjects expose a reality of an entropic subject, which consist of numerous amounts of subject-positions, thus expanding our notions of what being a Being is. In this way datasubjects represent its own self-categorization, while its subject of matter – the Being – is being held accountable. While digital action may display the present subjectivity, this existence also contains the possibility to expire the day after tomorrow.
It is within this framework that the thesis argues, how modern literature on digital privacy, surveillance, and subjectivity neglects, how digital attention and fear may also be the consequence of a Beings own acceptance of the explosion of their historical selves. Concluding, the thesis requests that datasubjects as such encourage and invites us to think of our own existence, not as a present subject-position, but instead as a flux of historical subjectivity owned by everyone.

EducationsMSocSc in Political Communication and Managment, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2020
Number of pages80
SupervisorsMarius Gudmand-Høyer