Writers Against Mass SurveillancePetition by Writers Against Mass Surveillance

Thank you for signing the petition “A STAND FOR DEMOCRACY IN THE DIGITAL AGE”

Multiply Your Impact

Turn your signature into dozens more by sharing this petition and recruiting people you know to sign.

On International Human Rights Day, 562 authors, including 5 Nobel Prize laureates, from over 80 countries have joined together to launch an appeal in defense of civil liberties against surveillance by corporations and governments. 5 Nobel Prize Winners have signed: Orhan Pamuk, J.M. Coetzee, Elfriede Jelinek, Günter Grass and Tomas Tranströmer. Also among the signatories are Umberto Eco, Margaret Atwood, Don DeLillo, Daniel Kehlmann, Nawal El Saadawi, Arundhati Roy, Henning Mankell, Richard Ford, Javier Marias, Björk, David Grossman, Arnon Grünberg, Angeles Mastretta, Juan Goytisolo, Nuruddin Farah, João Ribeiro, Victor Erofeyev, Liao Yiwu and David Malouf.

This global pledge was organized by an independent international group of authors –  Juli Zeh, Ilija Trojanow, Eva Menasse, Janne Teller, Priya Basil, Isabel Cole, and Josef Haslinger. On Dec 10 it is published in 30 news papers all around the world:

In recent months, the extent of mass surveillance has become common knowledge. With a few clicks of the mouse the state can access your mobile device, your e-mail, your social networking and Internet searches.

It can follow your political leanings and activities and, in partnership with Internet corporations, it collects and stores your data, and thus can predict your consumption and behaviour.

The basic pillar of democracy is the inviolable integrity of the individual. Human integrity extends beyond the physical body. In their thoughts and in their personal environments and communications, all humans have the right to remain unobserved and unmolested.

This fundamental human right has been rendered null and void through abuse of technological developments by states and corporations for mass surveillance purposes.

A person under surveillance is no longer free; a society under surveillance is no longer a democracy.

To maintain any validity, our democratic rights must apply in virtual as in real space.

* Surveillance violates the private sphere and compromises freedom of thought and opinion.

* Mass surveillance treats every citizen as a potential suspect. It overturns one of our historical  triumphs, the presumption of innocence.

* Surveillance makes the individual transparent, while the state and the corporation operate in secret. As we have seen, this power is being systemically abused.

* Surveillance is theft. This data is not public property: it belongs to us. When it is used to predict our behaviour, we are robbed of something else: the principle of free will crucial to democratic liberty.

WE DEMAND THE RIGHT for all people to determine, as democratic citizens, to what extent their personal data may be legally collected, stored and processed, and by whom; to obtain information on where their data is stored and how it is being used; to obtain the deletion of their data if it has been illegally collected and stored.


WE CALL ON ALL CITIZENS to stand up and defend these rights.

WE CALL ON THE UNITED NATIONS to acknowledge the central importance of protecting civil rights in the digital age, and to create an International Bill of Digital Rights. 

WE CALL ON GOVERNMENTS to sign and adhere to such a convention.



Juli Zeh Germany

Ilija Trojanow Germany

Eva Menasse Germany

Janne Teller Denmark

Priya Basil UK

Isabel Fargo Cole USA

Josef Haslinger Austria



Anila Wilms Albania

Boualem Sansal Algeria

José Eduardo Agualusa Angola

Maria Teresa Andruetto Argentina

Edgardo Cozarinsky Argentina

María Sonia Cristoff Argentina

Marcelo Figueras Argentina

Carlos Gamerro Argentina

Alberto Manguel Argentina

Guillermo Martinez Argentina

Elsa Osorio Argentina

Claudia Piñeiro Argentina

Samanta Schweblin Argentina

Debra Adelaide Australia

Chris Andrews Australia

Venero Armanno Australia

Larissa Beherendt Australia

James Bradley Australia

Brian Castro Australia

Nick Cave Australia

J. M. Coetzee Australia

Miriam Cosic Australia

Michelle de Kretser Australia

Nick Earls Australia

Delia Falconer Australia

Anna Funder Australia

Helen Garner Australia

Elisabeth Holdsworth Australia

Linda Jaivin Australia

Gail Jones Australia

Evelyn Juers Australia

Thomas Keneally Australia

Nam Le Australia

James Ley Australia

Angelo Loukakis Australia

David Malouf Australia

Frank Moorhouse Australia

Peter Rose Australia

Rosie Scott Australia

John Tranter Australia

Kirsten Tranter Australia

Arnold Zable Australia

Lily Brett Australia/USA

Geraldine Brooks Australia/USA

Melitta Breznik Austria

Olga Flor Austria

Karl-Markus Gauß Austria

Thomas Glavinic Austria

Monika Helfer Austria

Klaus Hoffer Austria

Alois Hotschnig Austria

Michael Köhlmeier Austria

Eva Menasse Austria

Robert Menasse Austria

Robert Pfaller Austria

Doron Rabinovici Austria

Kathrin Röggla Austria

David Schalko Austria

Robert Schindel Austria

Clemens J. Setz Austria

Marlene Streeruwitz Austria

Josef Winkler Austria

Daniel Kehlmann Austria/Germany

Tahmina Anam Bangladesh/UK

Ahmad Mostofa Kamal Bangladesh

Svetlana Alexievich Belarus

Valzhyna Mort Belarus/USA

Gie Bogaert Belgium

Saskia De Coster Belgium

Patrick De Rynck Belgium

Jozef Deleu Belgium

Laurent Demoulin Belgium

Charles Ducal Belgium

Joris Gerits Belgium

Jos Geysels Belgium

Luuk Gruwez Belgium

Thomas Gunzig Belgium

Peter Holvoet-Hanssen Belgium

Elisabeth Marain Belgium

Pierre Mertens Belgium

Bart Moeyaert Belgium

Elvis Peeters Belgium

Erik Spinoy Belgium

Jeroen Theunissen Belgium

Rik Torfs Belgium

Koen Van Bockstal Belgium

Walter van den Broeck Belgium

Miriam Van hee Belgium

David van Reybrouck Belgium

Annelies Verbeke Belgium

Paul Verhaeghe Belgium

Roel Verschueren Belgium

Erik Vlaminck Belgium

Georges Wildemeersch Belgium

Carl Norac Belgium/France

Joke van Leeuwen Belgium/Netherlands

Miljenko Jergović Bosnia

Marçal Aquino Brazil

Marcelo Backes Brazil

Rafael Cardoso Brazil

Bernardo Carvalho Brazil

João Paulo Cuenca Brazil

João Ubaldo Ribeiro Brazil

Luiz Ruffato Brazil

Author First Name Author Surname Country

Paulo Scott Brazil

Georgi Gospodinov Bulgaria

Kapka Kassabova Bulgaria/Scotland

Patrice Nganang Cameroon

Margaret Atwood Canada

Ken Babstock Canada

Cory Doctorow Canada

Yann Martel Canada

Colin McAdam Canada

Michael Ondaatje Canada

John Ralston Saul Canada

Madeleine Thien Canada

Arturo Fontaine Chile

Carla Guelfenbein Chile

Ariel Dorfman Chile/Argentina/USA

Lina Meruane Chile/USA

Liao Yiwu China

Héctor Abad Columbia

Oscar Collazos Columbia

Oscar Guardiola-Rivera Columbia

Antonio Ungar Colombia

Juan Gabriel Vásquez Colombia

Slavenka Drakulić Croatia

Nenad Popović Croatia

Dubravka Ugrešić Croatia

Leonardo Padura Fuentes Cuba

Iván de la Nuez Cuba/Spain

Jaroslav Rudiš Czech Rep.

Niels Barfoed Denmark

Thomas Boberg Denmark

Suzanne Brøgger Denmark

Tom Buk-Swienty Denmark

Peter H. Fogtdal Denmark

Katrine Marie Guldager Denmark

Iselin C. Hermann Denmark

Peter Høeg Denmark

Sven Holm Denmark

Hanne Vibeke Holst Denmark

Carsten Jensen Denmark

Pia Juul Denmark

Peter Øvig Knudsen Denmark

Morten Kringelbach Denmark

Jørgen Leth Denmark

Ib Michael Denmark

Morten Ramsland Denmark

Morten Sabroe Denmark

Pia Tafdrup Denmark

Abdourahman Waberi Djibouti

Francisco Proaño Arandi Ecuador

Alaa al-Aswany Egypt

Nawal El Saadawi Egypt

Ahdaf Soueif Egypt

Mona Eltahawy Egypt/USA

Horacio Castellanos Moya El Salvador

Monika Fagerholm Finland

Jarkko Tontti Finland

Kjell Westö Finland

Jean-Jacques Beineix France

Céline Curiol France

Marie Darrieussecq France

Philippe Djian France

Lionel Duroy France

Mathias Énard France

Jérôme Ferrari France

Anne-Marie Garat France

Laurent Gaudé France

Pascale Hugues France

Alban Lefranc France

Roger Lenglet France

Virginie Lou-Nony France

Jean Mattern France

Betty Mialet France

Catherine Millet France

Frédéric Mitterrand France

Hélène Neveu Kringelbach France

Philippe Pozzo di Borgo France

Flore Vasseur France

Martin Winckler France/Canada

Jonathan Littell France/USA

Friedrich Ani Germany

Michael Augustin Germany

Anke Bastrop Germany

Ulrich Beck Germany

Artur Becker Germany

Josef Bierbichler Germany

Marica Bodrožić Germany

Mirko Bonné Germany

Ralf Bönt Germany

Nora Bossong Germany

Daniel Cohn-Bendit Germany

Daniela Dahn Germany

Liane Dirks Germany

Doris Dörrie Germany

Ulrike Draesner Germany

Kurt Drawert Germany

Tanja Dückers Germany

Carolin Emcke Germany

Sherko Fatah Germany

David Finck Germany

Julia Franck Germany

Franziska Gerstenberg Germany

Christoph Giesa Germany

Roman Graf Germany

Günter Grass Germany

Kerstin Grether Germany

Annett Gröschner Germany

Gert Heidenreich Germany

Christoph Hein Germany

Thomas Hettche Germany

Paul Ingendaay Germany

Elfriede Jelinek Germany

Steffen Kopetzky Germany

Mareike Krügel Germany

Michael Krüger Germany

Michael Kumpfmüller Germany

Antje Kunstmann Germany

Katja Lange-Müller Germany

Benjamin Lauterbach Germany

Jo Lendle Germany

Michael Lentz Germany

Ulli Lust Germany

Angelina Maccarone Germany

Kristof Magnusson Germany

Sten Nadolny Germany

Christiane Neudecker Germany

Norbert Niemann Germany

Ingo Niermann Germany

Markus Orths Germany

Georg M. Oswald Germany

Inka Parei Germany

Annette Pehnt Germany

Antje Rávic Strubel Germany

Annika Reich Germany

Moritz Rinke Germany

Charlotte Roos Germany

Eugen Ruge Germany

Peter Schneider Germany

Erasmus Schöfer Germany

Ingo Schulze Germany

Hilal Sezgin Germany

Peter Sloterdijk Germany

Tilman Spengler Germany

Burkhard Spinnen Germany

Ulrike Steglich Germany

Hans-Ulrich Treichel Germany

Regula Venske Germany

Marius von Mayenburg Germany

Thomas von Steinaecker Germany

Gisela von Wysocki Germany

Jan Wagner Germany

Alissa Walser Germany

Theresia Walser Germany

Peter Weibel Germany

Florian Werner Germany

Roger Willemsen Germany

Ron Winkler Germany

Jan Christophersen Germany

Kwame Dawes Ghana/USA

Kostas Akrivos Greece

Petros Markaris Greece

Nina Rapi Greece

Thanassis Valtinos Greece

Edwidge Danticat Haiti/USA

Xu Xi Hong Kong/USA

Tibor Babiczky Hungary

Zsófia Balla Hungary

Zsófia Bán Hungary

Báthori Csaba Hungary

György Dragomán Hungary

Peter Esterhazy Hungary

Krisztián Grecsó Hungary

Noémi Kiss Hungary

László Krasznahorkai Hungary

Lajos Parti Nagy Hungary

Anna T. Szabó Hungary

Oddný Eir Iceland

Einar Már Guðmundsson Iceland

Hallgrímur Helgason Iceland

Bjarni Jónsson Iceland

Andri Snær Magnason Iceland

Steinnun Sigurðardóttir Iceland

Jón Kalman Stefánsson Iceland

Shahid Amin India

Amit Chaudhuri India

Tishani Doshi India

Naresh Fernandes India

Amitav Ghosh India

Ramchandra Guha India

Anjum Hassan India

Ranjit Hoskoté India

Raj Kamal Jha India

Ruchir Joshi India

Girish Karnad India

Mukul Kesavan India

Amitava Kumar India

Pankaj Mishra India

Kiran Nagarkar India

Jerry Pinto India

Arundhati Roy India

Arundhati Subramaniam India

Jeet Thayil India

Altaf Tyrewala India

Salil Tripathi India/UK

Suketu Mehta India/USA

Jabbar Yassin Hussin IraqBjörk Iceland

Sjón Iceland


Hassan Blasim Iraq/Finland

Najem Wali Iraq/Germany

Roddy Doyle Ireland

Colum McCann Ireland

Colm Tóibín Ireland/USA

Assaf Gavron Israel

David Grossman Israel

Etgar Keret Israel

Yitzhak Laor Israel

Sami Michael Israel

Amos Oz Israel

Zeruya Shalev Israel

Andrea Bajani Italy

Massimo Carlotto Italy

Erri de Luca Italy

Paolo Giordano Italy

Dacia Mariani Italy

Sabine Gruber Italy/Austria

Tosihiko Uji Japan

Elias Farkouh Jordan

Dominique Eddé Lebanon

Rawi Hage Lebanon/Canada

Ahmed Fagih Libya/Egypt

Ranga Yogeshwar Luxembourg

Nikola Madzirov Macedonia

Samson Kambalu Malawi

Tan Twan Eng Malaysia

Pierre Mejlak Malta

Rosa Beltrán Mexico

Sabina Berman Mexico

Carmen Boullosa Mexico

Ana Clavel Mexico

Alma Guillermoprieto Mexico

Valeria Luiselli Mexico

Angeles Mastretta Mexico

René Appel Netherlands

Abdelkader Benali Netherlands

Ronald Bos Netherlands

Ian Buruma Netherlands

Gerrit Bussink Netherlands

Saskia de Jong Netherlands

Job Degenaar Netherlands

Renate Dorrestein Netherlands

Rudolf Geel Netherlands

Arnon Grünberg Netherlands

Joke J. Hermsen Netherlands

Marjolin Hof Netherlands

Tjitske Jansen Netherlands

Liesbeth Lagemaat Netherlands

Thomas Lieske Netherlands

Geert Mak Netherlands

Nelleke Noordervliet Netherlands

Ester Naomi Perquin Netherlands

Aleid Truijens Netherlands

Manon Uphoff Netherlands

Jan van Mersbergen Netherlands

Anne Vegter Netherlands

Pip Adam New Zealand

Tim Corballis New Zealand

Nicky Hager New Zealand

Ingrid Horrocks New Zealand

Lloyd Jones New Zealand

Elizabeth Knox New Zealand

Bill Manhire New Zealand

Courtney Sina Meredith New Zealand

Sarah Quigley New Zealand

Anna Sanderson New Zealand

C. K. Stead New Zealand

Susan Pearce New Zealand/UK

Helon Habila Nigeria

Chika Unigwe Nigeria

Olumide Popoola Nigeria/Germany

Jostein Gaarder Norway

Per Petterson Norway

Mohsin Hamid Pakistan

Ahmed Rashid Pakistan

Kamila Shamsie Pakistan/GB

Suad Amiry Palestine

Mourid Barghouti Palestine

Najwan Darwish Palestine

Nathalie Handal Palestine

Raja Shehadeh Palestine

Adania Shibli Palestine

Ghassan Zaqtan Palestine

Ala Hlehel Palestine/Israel

Santiago Roncagliolo Peru

Miguel Syjuco Philippines/Canada

Ignacy Karpowicz Poland

Beata Stasińska Poland

Witold Szabłowski Poland

Olga Tokarczuk Poland

Pedro Rosa Mendes Portugal

Mircea Cărtărescu Romania

Vladimir Aristov Russia

Alan Cherchesov Russia

Victor Erofeyev Russia

Alisa Ganiyeva Russia

Dmitri Golynko Russia

Alexander Ilichevsky Russia

Sergei Lebedev Russia

Stanislav Lvovsky Russia

Mikhail Shishkin Russia

Alexander Skidan Russia

Alexander Snegiryov Russia

Cheikh Hamidou Kane Senegal

Author First Name Author Surname Country

David Albahari Serbia

Bora Ćosić Serbia/Croatia

Michal Hvorecký Slovakia

Gabriela Babnik Slovenia

Aleš Čar Slovenia

Aleš Debeljak Slovenia

Mojca Kumerdej Slovenia

Miha Mazzini Slovenia

Dušan Šarotar Slovenia

Aleš Šteger Slovenia

Nuruddin Farah Somalia/South Africa

Breyten Breytenbach South Africa

Antjie Krog South Africa

Zakes Mda South Africa

Margie Orford South Africa

Henrietta Rose-Innes South Africa

Gillian Slovo South Africa

Ivan Vladislavić South Africa

Zukiswa Wanner South Africa

Hwang Sok-Yong South Korea

Ricardo Bada Spain

Javier Cercas Spain

Rafael Chirbes Spain

Juan Goytisolo Spain

Julio Llamazares Spain

Javier Marías Spain

Antonio Muñoz Molina Spain

Rosa Montero Spain

Javier Salinas Spain

José F. A. Oliver Spain/Germany

Romesh Gunesekera Sri Lanka

Jamal Mahjoub Sudan

Arne Dahl Sweden

Per Olov Enquist Sweden

Aris Fioretos Sweden

Author First Name Author Surname Country

Jan Guillou Sweden

Björn Larsson Sweden

Henning Mankell Sweden

Håkan Nesser Sweden

Tomas Tranströmer Sweden

Svante Weyler Sweden

Melinda Nadj Abonji Switzerland

Sybille Berg Switzerland

Peter Bieri Switzerland

Irena Brežná Switzerland

Iso Camartin Switzerland

Alex Capus Switzerland

Martin Dean Switzerland

Catalin Florescu Switzerland

Christian Haller Switzerland

Reto Hänny Switzerland

Eveline Hasler Switzerland

Franz Hohler Switzerland

Pedro Lenz Switzerland

Charles Lewinsky Switzerland

Klaus Merz Switzerland

Julian Schütt Switzerland

Peter Stamm Switzerland

Alain Sulzer Switzerland

Urs Widmer Switzerland

Hala Mohammed Syria

Abdulrazak Gurnah Tanzania/UK

Rattawut Lapcharoensap Thailand/US

Tahar Bekri Tunesia/France

Yasar Kemal Turkey

Murathan Mungun Turkey

Orhan Pamuk Turkey

Buket Uzuner Turkey

Akkas Al-Ali UK

Tariq Ali UK

Author First Name Author Surname Country

David Almond UK

Martin Amis UK

Julian Barnes UK

John Berger UK

John Burnside UK

Louis de Bernières UK

Isobel Dixon UK

Joanne Harris UK

Kazuo Ishiguro UK

Pico Iyer UK

Stephen Kelman UK

Hari Kunzru UK

Ian McEwan UK

Stella Newman UK

Martin Rowson UK

Will Self UK

Owen Sheers UK

Philip Sington UK

Tom Stoppard UK

Adam Thirwell UK

David Vann UK

Nigel Warbuton UK

Irvine Welsh UK

Jeanette Winterson UK

Rana Dasgupta UK/India

Anjali Joseph UK/India

Nikita Lalwani UK/India

Fadia Faqir UK/Jordan

Hanif Kureishi UK/Pakistan

Lionel Shriver UK/US

Myroslav Marynovych Ukraine

Oksana Zabuzhko Ukraine

John Ashbery USA

Paul Auster USA

Elise Blackwell USA

Author First Name Author Surname Country

T. C. Boyle USA

Alexander Chee USA

Billy Collins USA

Don DeLillo USA

Colin Dickey USA

Jennifer Egan USA

Dave Eggers USA

Elizabeth Eslami USA

Jeffrey Eugenides USA

Richard Ford USA

George Dawes Green USA

Joe Hurley USA

Elizabeth Kostova USA

Adrian Nicole LeBlanc USA

Jonathan Lethem USA

Barry Lopez USA

Ben Marcus USA

Tyler McMahon USA

Maaza Mengiste USA/Ethiopia

Claire Messud USA

David Mitchell USA

Josip Novakovich USA

George Packer USA

Tim Parrish USA

Richard Powers USA

Domnica Radulescu USA/Romania

James Salter USA

Richard Sennett USA

Jane Smiley USA

Anne Waldman USA

Alice Walker USA

Eliot Weinberger USA

Jeffrey Yang USA

Sapphire USA

Aleksandar Hemon USA/Bosnia

Brian Chikwava Zimbabwe

source: http://www.change.org/petitions/a-stand-for-democracy-in-the-digital-age-3#share