Archive, October 4, 2017, they put it in the five-years plan
The China shipyard for BigBrother opened in 2014 and will close in 2020 : the overall outlines of the final result can be imagined through the fantasy of Nosedise’s authors, the first episode of the third season of Black Mirror, where the dystopia of the series produced by Netflix (shortly) foretells what it can be soon observed in Chinese reality.
By exploiting the distinctive features of the Chinese mobile data market, namely the high penetration of the use of services and devices, the user’s inurement to control of their business habits by service providers and the private, collective and public absence of digital privacy protection concepts, the Chinese government has planned the creation of a exclusively digital social credit system.
During the preparatory phase of the 13th five-year business plan (2016–2020), a document describing the system’s guidelines was drawn up in 2014. According to the forecasts, in 2020 it will lead to a ranking of public, individual and company ‘level merit’. In practice, this means the most important project of social engineering until now. The principle adopted is to assign, like Amazon or eBay, a rating of credibility to the vendors : the Chinese project contemplates the rating is assigned by the government to the several entities, but it does not specify the parameters that will be adopted in doing so.
The design phase includes all state institutions with big data that can be finalized for the purpose, such as Bank of China, and above all the major national corporate entities with significant data on the social habits of the population, e.g. AliBaba, Ant Financial Service, and Credit Management, the group’s digital ranking system.
The model is intended to arrive at lists of socially deserving and undeserving citizens in the Chinese context : this in an absolute sense, and not exclusively in a limited area of trust, such as credit or criminal law. In doing so, personal life habits will have relevance which are digitally detectable and considered to be positive by the dominant award criteria. By way of example physical activity, alcohol consumption, gambling, opinions expressed in social media and, for companies, sectoral administrative, fiscal and customer views.
The proscribed will be subject to structured restrictions, such as the purchase of air tickets, real estate, travel and trade with/and abroad. That waiting remed the situation and move, progressively, to purgatory and paradise for which preferential lanes are assumed in the use of different services.
Introduced with the need and with the alibi to provide transparency in social coexistence the idea, as WSJ reports, has given poor results up to now. Three reasons : the unconsciousness of the citizens to be ranked, the errors caused by the system and the confusion of the assessment criteria.
Keeping in mind the level of social control in China there is no doubt that the system will be, good or bad, put in line for 2020 : in addition to the natural (under the Western point of view) qualms about of the massive digital control, what is perplexing is how they will be able to channel all the digital traffic under the central umbrella, which is a key factor in the success of the project.
Considering the level of globalisation in which China is leveraging, in the five-year plan, to consolidate and increase its geo-economic status (one for all ‘one belt one road’), this is not currently the case, deliberately at the government level, for strategic economic and commercial reasons.
This post was originally published on October 4, 2017, in Italian version on www.thescanner.info .This is adaptation of a neuronal Italian/English AI translation by IBM Watson.