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Agneta Mallén

Agneta Mallén

Senior Lecturer

Agneta Mallén

When Baby Brother is watching: How civilians surveil control agents in the new era


  • Agneta Mallén

Summary, in English

Today, film clips and still pictures captured by civilians with their mobile phones are increasingly used as evidence to prove specific accounts of events. Distributed on news media, YouTube or other social media, these film clips can also expose misconduct by control agents such as police officers and security guards. The aim of this paper is to analyse three cases of such sousveillance that have been largely discussed in Sweden and Finland – police and security guardian misconduct that was filmed by civilians and distributed widely on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. The study shows, that the exposed misconduct both had social and legal consequences for the police and security officers that were filmed: on the one hand, the filming and distribution of the events resulted in legal proceedings against these control agents, on the other, the distribution of the mobile phone video clips resulted in processes of shaming and stigmatization of them.


  • Sociology

Publishing year




Document type

Working paper


  • Sociology


  • citizen journalism
  • control agents
  • police