The Equation Of The Internet

The NSA stories of the past few days haven’t surprised me. Everything, but the exact names of the companies, has been written about on some of the geekier sites. I’ve even written about it on the blog.

These NSA projects are very troubling. How can this and the 4th Amendment co-exist?

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Let me explain the equation of the Internet. It’s there, implicit, not spoken. We agree to allow the Internet to know everything about us as long as it never uses it against us.

Let’s face it, your cable company, Google, Facebook and a bunch of other entities you don’t even know exist, know everything about you.

They know what size you wear and what styles you like. They know the porn you view. They know if you’re pregnant or dating or lonely. They know when you’re sick. They always know where you are.

They know more about you than your mom or your spouse. It could be argued they know you better than you do!

It’s creepy they know this, but mostly they make life better. It’s a trade we make.

The government, on the other hand, has punitive powers. It can punish. We have all seen examples of mistakes made.

Imagine the government’s enforcement powers, triggered like a Google search. Usually a good match. Not always.

I don’t want my government doing this.

Maybe it’s time we had access to the databases we appear in? We need an Internet ‘credit report’ law.

7 thoughts on “The Equation Of The Internet”

  1. Yes, it’s no surprise. I’ve also said that all this hoopla over the Second Amendment is mostly a smokescreen so that people won’t notice what’s happening to the Fourth Amendment. Or Freedom of the Press or the Right to Assemble……

  2. But, which government, Geoff? The Internet is pretty much international, as are most of the providers and many of the retailers. In a world in which we can’t get governments to agree on human rights, nuclear arms, or even fishing rights, they probably won’t be too cooperative on this. The solutions would probably require international geek agreement in order to wrest back the necessary control. Just sayin’

  3. Is it not at least partly our own faults? How many people bother to encrypt an email message or even know that it can be done?

    When you send a post card, you assume it can be read by anyone, but put that in an envelope and ……..

    Hard drive encryption? What’s that?

    Will the next cell phones come with voice scramblers?

  4. I agree with what you are saying Susan. In this world of Internet that we live in now it has been much easier to obtain information on all fronts. While I may not agree with what they are doing, I am not worried about my photos of my grandchildren’s birthdays being seen by the US Government. I have nothing to hide. I hope they enjoy viewing them. This was initially started by Bush after 9/11. We live in a different world than when I was young and while I am not happy with this blanket search, I do think it is a useful tool in gathering information to prevent a terrorist event (if the patterns and communications show it) or to find the culprits and their contacts after an event occurs. So where do you draw the line? It is not simple in this technology age and again, when the 4th amendment was drafted I am sure they had not even a thought of the type of world we live in today.

    1. I’ve always thought that if the Founding Fathers could see what’s become of their bold experiment they’d be shocked awed, disgusted and amazed. I think Ben Franklin would have a ball in the 21st century. He always was ahead of his time.

  5. The laws are always behind the times when technology is concerned. And right now lawmakers are more concerned with throwing crap at eachother than actually writing and passing laws that are of any practical use to the average American. The subject will eventually be reviewed but I’m not holding my breath for that to happen any time soon.

  6. Actually Geoff the Internet doesn’t know much about me at all. If they did they wouldn’t send me info on joining the Gerber baby club or free Viagra.

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