Open Access Journal

ISSN: 2183-2439

Editorial | Open Access

The Politics of Privacy—A Useful Tautology

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Abstract:  While communication and media studies tend to define privacy with reference to data security, current processes of datafication and commodification substantially transform ways of how people act in increasingly dense communicative networks. This begs for advancing research on the flow of individual and organizational information considering its relational, contextual and, in consequence, political dimensions. Privacy, understood as the control over the flow of individual or group information in relation to communicative actions of others, frames the articles assembled in this thematic issue. These contributions focus on theoretical challenges of contemporary communication and media privacy research as well as on structural privacy conditions and people’s mundane communicative practices underlining inherent political aspect. They highlight how particular acts of doing privacy are grounded in citizen agency realized in datafied environments. Overall, this collection of articles unfolds the concept of ‘Politics of Privacy’ in diverse ways, contributing to an emerging body of communication and media research.

Keywords:  agency; datafication; data security; media practices; politics; privacy



© Johanna E. Möller, Jakub Nowak, Sigrid Kannengießer, Judith E. Möller. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.