Tuesday, November 27, 2012

No privacy, no mas

Andy Sullivan

In the wake of the Petraeus scandal, Melik Kaylan sounds the alarm over the loss of privacy in the Internet age:

This is a huge loss that accompanies the huge gain of the Internet. Non-saints all need some zone of privacy if they are to remain sane. And yet no one can really avoid the tools of email and texting and tweeting and Tumblring and Instagramming if they want to be part of society - and any single image or text or email can be instantly communicated to everyone on the planet by almost anyone. Anthony Weiner will therefore always live with the image of his fruit-of-the-loom chubby as if it were stamped to his forehead like a Scarlet Letter of old. Yes, there are great advantages to transparency - we would never have grasped the full extent of the torture under Bush and Cheney if some hadn't taken digital photos of the Cheney-authorized techniques in use at Abu Ghraib. But there is also great human cost.

He goes into more detail but the caution is simple: every time you hit "enter" or "send" or now apparently "save as draft", it is there for all the world to see if someone really wants to. Be careful.

Or more narrowly, clandestine business is best carried out clandestinely. If it isn't written down, it didn't happen, thank you Tom Clancy. This is nothing new. Carrier pigeons fell into the wrong hands sometimes too.

1 comment:

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