Surveillance society I
Posted on February 16, 2008
First of all, I have to say that I do not believe in the conspiracy theory. Anyone who has read Eco’s “Foucault’s Pendulum”, knows why.
Now this being said, today I will share my thoughts on the limitations of privacy policies through internet.
We all know what spam is, right? Someone has stolen your e-mail address (or you have given it to a certain company that sold it to a third-party without your consent), and all of a sudden you get all sorts of unsolicited e-mails, like the many ones I receive that try to make me believe my d*ck is not that satisfying to the ladies well, he better not be satisfying some other ladies or else …
Oddly enough, I am not bothered by this type of spam. I mean you get my address, you don’t really care who is it, and use it for commercial reasons. If I happen to like one of the products you’re trying to sell, well that’s that, otherwise i won’t even bother looking at your e-mails.
What I think is a lot scarier and in a sense wwwwaaaaay too much potentially corrupt, is the type of e-mailing that associates real people with real private data to their preferences.
Now that is potentially harmful in my vision. And not only my vision, believe me.
Why is it harmful?
1) Imagine that a service over the Internet links your online private data (e-mails, personal page) to the pages that you browse, to your musical preferences you have specified on your sessions on a music radio page, etc. Now that doesn’t seem sooo dangerous, would it? In fact, it would be rather nice to receive in your internet browsing experience only advertorial related to your interests, right?
2) What about if another service over the internet gathers information on your electronic payments: a) where you have bought, b) exactly what!!, c) what amount of money, etc …
Extended information can be drawn from raw material point 2) like what are your real buying interests, what is the frequency you have in buying over the internet, your sizes, your prefered places for online shopping etc not to mention your physical address and credit card info.
3) Now imagine that a worldwide e-mail & search service would gather both information about you: your e-mail and chat info and statistics, your stated preferences and public friends (and their statistics as well) all together with the electronic payments you do!
Now that means linking physical address and real financial info to virtual info, which ultimately is a very real info in itself. That would mean that we enter a society where some global central juridical corpus owns essential info on your person. On every person, in fact!
That is something that ought not to happen! I mean, you can gather whatever online-info on me as you please, but do not, by any means, link it to the real person behind.