- “You’re walking along the street past a well-known clothes’ store and a message on your mobile invites you in with the promise of a 20% discount. The “new-look you” emerges from the store and 20 yards down the street, your mobile tells you that it is happy hour at your favourite bar – you check and see that two of your mates are not far away – and , hey presto, you have an instant night out. Sounds familiar? Of course not, but that’s the vision that has been promised both by the mobile operators and various digital visionaries for the last decade. Location-based services have been the next big thing for a long time.”
” It’s not out of context to think that the contemporary information society creates new kind of territories: informational territory. Is plausible to think that the information society produces new territories. Informational territories can be understood as areas where informational flow in the intersection between cyberspace and urban space is digitally controlled. Here uses can either control inputs and outputs of information date. The informational territory creates a new function of place, a heterotopy. (…) So place, as a result of territorialization (geographic delimitation, laws, and regulations) gains new layer information that’s a new territory created by electronic networks and mobile devices.
(…) All territory is made of information. Although, in using the term informational territory, I want to differentiate digital information layers from other forms of “information”. Wireless networks, sensors and mobile technologies that open up new uses of place create digital information layers. The informational territory is not cyberspace, but the territory in a place formed by the relationship between the physical dimensions of territorialities and the new electronic flows, creating a new form of territorialization. The place becomes more complex because this territory is now related with other territorialities (laws, regulations, subjectivities, cultures, and politics). Empirically, we can see these informational territories by examining the use of public spaces equipped with the new infrastructure of wireless networks and devices or from ethnographic research showing the relationship of users with the space before and after the formation of informational territories.
(…) Others speak in terms of a “bubble” (Beslay and Hakala, 2005) or a “cloud” (Vander Wal, in Roush 2006). These images are interesting and show a picture of the “form” of the territory informational. However, both “digital bubble” and “digital cloud” do not offer the ontological dimension of place; they don’t inform about the basic principles of these bubbles or clouds. I propose the concept of informational territory because, although it may take the form of a “bubble” or “cloud”, it indicates here not a form but a function, a way the place is reconfigured by technology, sensors and digital mobile networks. If we think about territories, we can see the new dynamics, new forces and new powers being established in places through these devices and networks (here we can face political problems like surveillance, monitoring, privacy, the digital divide, and so on). “…