Saturday, February 19, 2011

Privacy, Or the Lack Of It

So, I was cruising through Wikipedia trying to get some background for a paper I need to write, trolling for ideas like I always do. (really wish I could use it as a source...) Anyways, I found myself reading about Google, and then some criticisms of the company itself. Most of them are centered around privacy, as Google has taken a lot of flak for that. I stumbled across this quote by their CEO from December, 2009:

"If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place."

This is a stance that seems pretty popular, and its one that really bothers me. I'm far from a scaremonger, and you won't catch me posting Illuminati spam all over Youtube vids, but I do think that if I'm to lose privacy, I should be gaining something out of it. I can see a cookie lifetime of 18 months. But their former 32 years I question a little more, as I really doubt that my searches at 10 years old are still useful, relevant data to Google when I'm 42.

On a smaller scale, I was a bit annoyed to see that the town I live near will be installing security cameras all over, to "prevent crime". Maybe I could see it if we were a high crime area, but we aren't. So we're spending large amounts of money on a camera system, then paying police to sit there and watch various video feeds, all so there's a nice recording of me in case I do something they aren't fond of.

To clarify, I guess it feels like a presumption of guilt. It's ok that we have surveillance on you, as you might do something wrong! Sure, maybe I will do something wrong, but until I do, what's the justification? I know, I know, it's a public place, how can I really expect privacy? And after all, if I'm not doing anything wrong, what do I have to be afraid of?

In order for me to support something like that, there can't be a person sitting behind the monitors watching. People aren't infallible, and I expect perfection from anyone who's going to be in a position like that.

Anyways, this got to be a bit of a mini rant, so likely it could have been worded much better, but oh well. What do you guys think? I tend to think I have hardly any privacy, but man, I sure wouldn't complain if I had more of it.

19 comments:

  1. I know what you're talking about. Im not a real conspiracytheorist either but the attitude that governments and big corporations alike share towards a persons privacy is just apalling nowadays! You just dont know who's watching you anymore, maybe its not that wise for me to be complaining about google when Im using chro-

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  2. You should edit your comments, some people say the dumbest things!

    We don't have privacy anymore and most people don't mind and even ask for an invasion....sites like myspace and facebook have destroyed our rights to privacy!

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  3. Agreed Lifehacks. I don't want to turn on comment moderation, as I feel it requires too much effort on my part to sift through the often 30+ comments. I do read every comment though, and delete those I find in error. The comment you were referring to is a prime example.

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  4. And this is why I never google porn.

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  5. Google pretty much controls the world. What do you think happens if google stops linking to a website, their traffic would be about 1/10 of what it was before.

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  6. Cameras on every corner, every action on the web recorded, data mining is highly profitable. Unfortunate truths of the place we live in :( Keep up the good posts!

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  7. Agreeing with MArk. As a fun little tidbit about google, check out my post (Fascinating, Interesting...) on my blog

    juju-paintballer.blogspot.com

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  8. One word, Big Brother.

    However, I'm not too fussed about being looked over, watched down the street, having internet history recorded.

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  9. Me being a retard. Aparently Big Brother is two words

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  10. "On a smaller scale, I was a bit annoyed to see that the town I live near will be installing security cameras all over, to "prevent crime"."

    The city just down the road from my little town is doing this. Shit is definitely not cash...

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  11. That quote makes me sick. I don't want to live in the world without privacy.

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  12. It's just like 1984.. have we no privacy no more? Can I have a little sleep outside the pub, say, or a vomit near a subway, I'd use a postbox as a crapper, without your omnipresent snapper catching me with my hands around my knees, in fully search able three hundred and sixty degrees

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  13. "Those who are willing to trade their freedom for a bit of security will receive neither"

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