No one would have believed in the first years of the twenty-first century that the online world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences lesser than man’s and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various blogs they were scrutinised and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a woman with a microscope might scrutinise the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water.
With infinite complacency men went twittering and facebooking over this globe about their little affairs, serene in their assurance of their empire over the Internet.
No one gave a thought to the older political classes as sources of human danger, or thought of them only to dismiss the idea of Digital Interference as impossible or improbable.
It is curious to recall some of the mental habits of those departed days. At most online users fancied there might be government Twitter accounts, perhaps inferior to themselves and ready to welcome a missionary enterprise.
Yet across the gulf of the music industry, the film lobby and the security contractors, intellects narrow and cool and unsympathetic, regarded our Internet with envious eyes, and slowly and surely drew their plans against us.
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