Due to recent technological advancements, governments can exercise an unprecedented amount of power over their citizens. It is vital to understand how governments impose restrictions on citizens through digital technologies, especially if those restrictions can save lives. Here, we look at the case of Home Quarantine—a Polish government-mandated smartphone application whose use has become mandatory during the COVID-19 crisis. Users in quarantine are legally required to use the application, reporting location and take selfie photographs. We conducted an autoethnographic diary study of one author using the app during quarantine and interviews with 23 users. We found that the app assisted in creating quarantine life routines and affected social interactions. Users connected with the world outside quarantine through selfies. We also uncovered key reservations our users had about using this app. Our work broadens the understanding of location-based apps and practices around surveillance technologies.

‘I would have Preferred an Ankle Tag’: The Lived Experience of a Nationwide Quarantine App

Mencarini, Eleonora;
2021

Abstract

Due to recent technological advancements, governments can exercise an unprecedented amount of power over their citizens. It is vital to understand how governments impose restrictions on citizens through digital technologies, especially if those restrictions can save lives. Here, we look at the case of Home Quarantine—a Polish government-mandated smartphone application whose use has become mandatory during the COVID-19 crisis. Users in quarantine are legally required to use the application, reporting location and take selfie photographs. We conducted an autoethnographic diary study of one author using the app during quarantine and interviews with 23 users. We found that the app assisted in creating quarantine life routines and affected social interactions. Users connected with the world outside quarantine through selfies. We also uncovered key reservations our users had about using this app. Our work broadens the understanding of location-based apps and practices around surveillance technologies.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11582/328366
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