Here’s a great piece from CNN today that pretty much sums up where we’re at as far as privacy – there is none. It’s so good, it deserves it’s own post.
What blows my mind is that we got here without a fight. People complain about guns, politics, taxes – you name it. But just about no one, is complaining about the loss of privacy — which means the loss of freedom. Because without privacy, there is no freedom. While we were busy complaining, the kids with white socks came in and stole our privacy — and freedom. But they didn’t really steal it — because people helped them. It just blows my mind, that no one cares about this.
Doesn’t anyone care that everything they say, everything they do, everywhere they go, is being tracked and mined? Are you kidding me?
People think we’re free? We’re not. Not even close. Not only did people get duped by social media and free apps, they lined the owners of these companies pockets with money. So let’s get this straight. People gave away their privacy and their freedom, and made the folks rich — who duped them. This has got to be, the greatest con of all time.
James Blackwell says
The CNN op-ed feels like a Will McEvoy intro on Aaron Sorkin’s “The Newsroom.” It’s a declaration, that what’s happening is not in line with the freedom that America was founded upon.
I personally can’t wait for season 2… particularly to see where they go with the issue of privacy.
We should all be so angry, up in arms, protesting the fact that we freely gave our personal data to companies that are (legally) doing whatever they please with it – and making truckloads of $$$. But the general public’s response tends to be “oh, well… but I can’t live without my cell phone!” I sincerely believe most of the current tech involved was developed with sincere intentions to improve communication and increase convenience.
However, this is a prime example of why staying informed and participating in the debate is so vital. Thanks for the heads up, and for sharing this Paulie! I seldom find much of value on CNN. Their insatiable appetite for content – to fill the 24-hour-news cycle (between ads) – leads them to bookend real reporters like Fareed Zakaria with talking hairdos I just can’t listen to.
Your comments are on point. But I think a glaring omission in this discussion of the ease of access to personal data, the demise of privacy and our loss of freedom – is the role of government.
The concept of “freedom” – particularly regarding speech, religion, information and expression – is uniquely American. The Patriot Act is the ultimate irony: it could not be more un-American. The internet has erased barriers established by Mother Nature (oceans, mountains, etc.) and the world is getting smaller. We can either embrace it or try to stay “off the grid”… because now that it’s gone, we will not get it back.
But make no mistake: the policies in place were debated & approved by men and women voted into office. A big part of the problem is most of us citizens are busy trying to provide for our families, educate our kids, and maybe even have some fun… So we established a “representative democracy.” The Supreme Court legalized what I’d call bribery of our representatives, and now they spend more time telling US what should be important than protecting our freedom.
Because money may now be speech – but corporations will never be people. The free market has no nationality – and the companies we gave the airwaves free of charge, long ago, have no allegiance to any ideals or ethics only profitability and their shareholders.
We’ve fallen farther than I ever thought we would – but I’d argue that we actually did elect folks who were supposed to protect us. And they failed us miserably.
blackwellspace has great comments.
Did you see the posts I put up on Google? This is yet another egregious violation by them. It blows my mind, what they’re getting away with.
The genie is out of the bottle. Walking the other day with the dogs, I thought about what it would take for us get back our privacy.
To start, we’d need bandwidth that was protected. But the bandwidth would have to go in data centers — that are basically controlled by the government. Assuming someone could strike a deal to get into a data center with the understanding that all data would be encrypted, that would be a start. But then there’d have to be bandwidth connections to other data centers and those data centers would have to agree that the bandwidth is encrypted.
Someone would have to design phones, tablets and computers that weren’t able to be tracked. Or in other words, a new OS would have to be invented. That’s possible. But. Just about every OS is covered by patents. So, an OS would have to be invented that’s not covered by a patent.
What about our credit cards? Someone would have to start a credit card company where all transactions are encrypted. Then merchants would have to accept this new card.
What about each time we fill out a form on the Internet? We have no control over that data, so something like what abine.com is doing would have to be used. But the problem there is, credit card transactions are validated against a billing address and phone number.
It’s a mess.
But that doesn’t mean we should give up.
I think the first thing is for consumers to abandon Facebook and Google. Then people need to start complaining to Apple and Microsoft. Change is never ceded until there’s demand.