The Virtual Deputy: Digital Surveillance and Neoliberal Governmentality
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This thesis interrogates the website BlueServo.net through a neoliberal framework with a focus on surveillance theory. BlueServo is a site that registers users as "Virtual Deputies" and allows them to file reports with U.S. Border Patrol on activity observed through camera feeds trained on the U.S.-Mexico Border. Employing textual analysis of the site and its attendant Facebook page, four thematic categories emerge for analysis: Labor, Entertainment, State, and Social Sorting. This thesis concludes with a discussion of the site in relation to reality TV and video game culture and the future of increasingly sophisticated and widely accessible digital surveillance as applied to social minorities.