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.