Introducing the need to use technology as a tool, and not as a master

Karen Renaud, Michael McGuire

Research output: Other contribution

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We have all been horrified and saddened as the full story of the Post Office case has unfolded in the public domain. We hear about harms to sub postmasters, to their families and their health and we wonder how it was possible for this injustice to occur at such a scale.

Many are pointing to the kinds of collusions which have typically characterised the ‘crimes of the powerful’. The lies, the evasions, and the brazen cover-ups on the part of post office managers, the abject failure of politicians to exercise due diligence and the rewards given by the establishment to those who treated the postmasters so appallingly. However, there is a bigger picture that also needs to be considered, which we call out in McGuire and Renaud (2023).

Technology powers everything we do: airplanes, devices we use to communicate globally, and our home appliances, to mention just a few. We, as a society, have embraced the convenience and functionality offered by technology, but very few people understand how it works, even fewer understand that technology is not infallible and far fewer still appreciate the subversive power technology has acquired to regulate our lives. Fundamental to this hegemonic technological order is an unquestioning docility, one spawned by a shift in the very way we think about the world. What the great theorist of technology Herbert Marcuse termed ‘technological rationality’ is nothing less than a cognitive colonisation, a reshaping of our minds along technical, rather than human lines.
Original languageEnglish
TypeREPHRAIN Project Blog
Media of outputOnline blog
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - 22 Mar 2024


  • technology
  • privacy
  • cyber security


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