Digital Opposition

The importance of digital communication for modern societies cannot be overestimated. In the last two decades the rise of information and communication technology and the global reach of the internet has made internet politics a new and heavily contested policy field reaching from questions of content regulation to issues of cybersecurity and cyberwar.

Non-state actors play an enormous role with regard to Internet Governance as well as in the societal struggles over the normative evaluation of our digital order. For example, civil society actors and corporations, who provide central infrastructure and services, are heavily involved in defining who gets access to the web or shaping the nets publics. Other non-state actors do protest the closure of the open infrastructure of the web. WikiLeaks, Edward Snowden, hackers or digital movements do enjoy much public support, while at the same time being criminalized by states and private corporations. The project explores, how non-state actors do shape our understanding of cyberspace and how they are included in the formation of social, legal and technical norms.

Project director:
  • Thiel, Thorsten
Anonymity and its Prospects in the Digital World | 2017

Thiel, Thorsten (2017): Anonymity and its Prospects in the Digital World, PRIF Working Papers No. 38, Frankfurt/M.

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The Original Battle Trolls: How States Represent the Internet as a Violent Place | 2015

Ben Kamis/Thorsten Thiel, The Original Battle Trolls: How States Represent the Internet as a Violent Place, PRIF Working Paper No. 23, Frankfurt/M., 2015.

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Cyber, Cyber. | 2015

Thorsten Thiel, Cyber, Cyber. Krieg und Frieden in einer vernetzten Welt, in: Polar – Politik, Theorie, Alltag, 10(19), Oktober 2015, S. 55-61. Online:

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Die Schönheit der Chance | 2014

Thiel, Thorsten (2014): Die Schönheit der Chance. Utopien und das Internet, in: Juridikum. Zeitschrift für Kritik | Recht | Gesellschaft, 15:4, 459-471.

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Internet und Souveränität | 2014

Thorsten Thiel, Internet und Souveränität. In: Christian Volk/Friederike Kuntz (Hg.), Der Begriff der Souveränität in der transnationalen Konstellation, Baden-Baden (Nomos), 2014, S. 215-239.

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