Wednesday, September 15, 2010

internet privacy

I can't follow you outside slashdot unless YOU make that possible. I don't know who you are. I can search your posts by your username because YOU choose to create an account and post under that account. I can't see what posts you made as an AC. Or what moderations you have done.

All your actions outside posts made under your account are unknown to me, unless YOU somehow share them AND link them to this account. You could be Obama for all I know, or be Lady Gaga. Now, I could google your nickname, but that only works if you used the same nick somewhere else.

It is possible to analyse all your posts and from them deduce a profile based on your style of writing. To be fair for the average slashdot poster that would put their location as "nearest kindergarden" but it might be possible to trace you to a specific location.

BUT that is because YOU choose to link all your posts together.

On the other hand, in the real world, I can't go invisible when I leave my house. So my neighbours know when I come and when I go. The supermarket can tell what I am doing by what I am buying. The bookshop knows my reading habbits (you sicko, is their personalized greeting) etc etc.

So, why do people worry about their online visibitlity where you can be a million different people, when everyone and their dog knows your offline person and what it is doing?

If you ever lived in a small community, you are used to it and you know, if the community is good, then it is a benefit. Neighbours actually stopped an attempted burglary because they knew I was away and saw movement so knew it couldn't be okay when I was younger and lived in a "village" that was about a dozen houses. In Amsterdam I had a neighbour discovered after the smell from the rotting corpse finally drifted into the hallway. All I knew was that the previous resident had moved and nobody ever noticed the new person moving in.

Don't complain about invasion of privacy is you broadcast every fart you make to the entire world. It is like saying "how dare people look at me when I streak down the high street".

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