One of the weapons that LAPD uses to track, monitor, and control our communities is a data-mining platform from Palantir. Founded by white supremacist Peter Thiel with funding and guidance from the CIA, Palantir is a for-profit business that built data-mining technology for intelligence-gathering and drone assassinations in Afghanistan. ICE and DHS also depend on Palantir to find and target immigrants for deportation. Last year LAPD paid $3.3 million to Palantir, alongside other expenses for training and support. Other cities have cut ties with Palantir, and today “the only major metropolitan force using Palantir is the Los Angeles Police Department.”
On April 20, 2021, we hosted a community workshop to collaboratively map the ecology that Palantir operates in. The workshop was based on an exercise we developed last year called The Algorithmic Ecology: An Abolitionist Tool for Organizing Against Algorithms. Below is the initial diagram we made during the meeting, plus a video recording.