Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Illusion of Privacy

Driving home, I heard on the news radio that a class action suit has been filed against Verizon and the NSA, by people who have had their phones surveyed without probable cause.

I am probably among those who've been "followed." I'm a Verizon customer. But when I try to get angry about this, all I can think of is how boring my phone use is.
"Mom, I'm at the Ferry Avenue station. Can you pick me up?"

"Yeah, I'll be there in five minutes."

"Where are you, Spare?"

"Playing Risk at Andrew's house."

"Okay. Lock up when you come in."

"Honey, what do you want for dinner?"

"Would you like me to pick up some fish?"

"Well, that would be nice, but don't go to Wegman's hungry. And if you go there, don't forget to pick up some TaB for Heir."

"She shouldn't be drinking that stuff."

On and on and on and on. It bores ME to tears.

How about this little fascinating exchange:

Anne: Thanks for returning my call.

Dr. Dixon: How's Decibel doing?

Anne: Well, blah blah blah blah ... *bird talk for 10 minutes*

Long sermon short, the NSA or anyone else for that matter can listen to my phone calls all they want. Why they would want to is beyond me, but there you go. Privacy is an illusion. You want privacy? Find some dark holler where the sun don't never shine and the cell service don't never work.

Anyone who has ever had any sense of privacy in this country must use a short form for their federal taxes. I'm sure the IRS could tell you my underwear size and the name of the person in front of me in line at the gas station this afternoon.

 Privacy is an illusion. Therefore, live as publicly as possible. Make your life a statement. Secrets are for sissies.


Aquila ka Hecate said...

I agree that privacy has become largely an illusion. But I've still gone ahead and de-googled myself, a lengthy and tiresome task.
Perhaps all the shouting about PRISM woke me up to the fact that spending much of my time on networking with dodgy strangers was not doing my mind any good.
Not that you're a dodgy stranger, Anne.

Terri in Joburg

Davoh said...

people peering from behind chintz curtains - have been around for as long as i can remember.

Katy Anders said...

I've thought the same thing: Whatever federal employee is listening in to my phone calls has the worst job in the country.

I still don't like the idea of anyone being able to do that.

But it has to be the principle of the thing, I guess. Because I am boring as HELL...

Anonymous said...

It is the principle of the thing: the principle is that we should have checks and balances in our government so that no one gets enough power to seriously abuse it. the idea of having to get a warrant is to bring someone else into the equation so that you aren't at the mercy one only one person listening to your conversation and possibly misinterpreting it to your detriment.