OpinionTo hell with privacy, I want a world where absolutely all information is completely available to everyone, forever
      – BorgClown, 2009-03-30 at 06:00:28   (30 comments)

On 2009-03-30 at 06:02:10, BorgClown wrote...
Everything's publib! You have AIDS? Public. You want to see the digital fingerprint of the CIA director? Public. IRS income, tax and devolutions? Public. You get the drift.
On 2009-03-30 at 07:38:04, Thelevellers wrote...
I'm gonna have to give this one a lot of thought. I can see why it would be good, but my gut reaction is still 'NONONONONONONONONOOOOOOO!'. I guess it seems like quite a harsh extreme to go to, a lot of people are uncomfortable with such stuff being revealed. Personally I don't think I'd have a problem, I'm quite happy to tell people everything generally! Though I guess things like STDs could cause issues - mostly only major issues for people that deserve it (the classic spouse: 'Well how the hell did you suddenly develop chlamidia?!' cheater: 'Erm. Oops?!'). I dunno. I'm gonna go have a longer think..!
On 2009-03-30 at 08:45:10, Lee J Haywood wrote...
This reminds me of the articles I've just been reading about stealing other people's DNA and having it scanned for SNPs without their consent. It almost seems ludicrous to try and legislate against people taking 'samples' you leave around, given how strong the temptation would be for, say, someone to check up on their fiancée's DNA. The thing about privacy, I find, is that we all want more information about everyone around us all the time but we want to keep our own details secure against misuse. Perhaps we think of ourselves as trustworthy but are inevitably suspicious of everyone else.
On 2009-03-30 at 12:46:10, Baslisks wrote...
I want your credit card info.... dun dun dun
On 2009-04-01 at 06:49:40, BorgClown wrote...
@Baslisks: Money would be pointless is everyone shares their financial info.
On 2009-04-01 at 06:55:31, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: That's a good point. Some information is too easily accessible to be hidden. I insist: we have too much privacy, from medical conditions to government secrets. In my Ideal world, everything would be available to everyone, and society would be very different than what we know.
On 2009-04-01 at 08:54:46, Lee J Haywood wrote...
There are too many reasons for privacy to simply give it all up. Don't publish your telephone number if you don't want to be constantly bothered by salespeople. Don't give away your personal details if you don't want someone to impersonate you. It is, however, possible to have too much security - where few people have too much control over too much information. @BorgClown: What is it that you think would be different?
On 2009-04-02 at 05:46:51, BorgClown wrote...
Come on, if information about who calls you was available, it would be easy to denounce them, the operator along with the company who promotes telemarketing. Even more, advertising could be so targeted that maybe you'd see fewer and more relevant ads.
On 2009-04-02 at 09:19:25, Lee J Haywood wrote...
So you're saying that people are forced to make everything public by law, with no cheats? How does that work when someone 'forgets' to disclose something? What about when you're completely unable to find work because no employer will touch someone with your history, which is now public? What about the woman who moved away from her abusive partner only to have herself standing outside her new house on Street View? Some people have legitimate reasons for hiding both themselves and their details.
On 2009-04-02 at 18:31:43, Thelevellers wrote...
Iwould guess that the employer thing would be less of an issue, as pretty much everyone has some stuff in their history that looks bad, so I think employers would get over it a bit. Obviously that doesn't work for everything ,but the worst stuff is usually available to them any way (i.e. criminal record checks)...? I'm still not sure about this one... Oh, how do you target ads to people who purposefully ignore them? I never use ads to buy stuff, I go to google and find customer reviews where possible, or read up on the subject and get as much info as possible to make an educated decision. Or I just get whatever is on the shelf in the shop I happen to be in, with a bias towards cheap or quality depending on the individual item. Adverts do nothing but entertain/irritate me.
On 2009-04-03 at 07:21:07, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: As more and more information is being collected about anything, I was thinking about businesses being forced by law to make it public. Payroll, accounting, customer and HR data, commerce, etc. People could choose to hide as much of their information as possible, which would become progressively harder. Things like the protected witnesses programs would have to be reworked, though.
On 2009-04-03 at 07:23:06, BorgClown wrote...
@Thelevellers: I put ads as an example for average people. I, like you, block marketing both literally and mentally, unless the ads are very funny or relevant.
On 2009-04-03 at 08:14:12, Lee J Haywood wrote...
The HR databases I work with have to be controlled - in our case, the data doesn't even belong to us but comes from our software and is sometimes needed for testing. It's not clear what someone would do with a person's name, address and telephone number - apart from marketing to them mercilessly. I don't usually think of identity theft as a particularly significant threat, but if someone started doing things in your name using all your HR data to 'prove' that they are you that would be bad. Also, it would be bad if someone could take all of these HR databases and find anyone's address by name. If I wanted to escape a stalker or a psychopath, or hunt down someone I wanted revenge against, the freedom of information would destroy lives.
On 2009-04-04 at 06:35:11, BorgClown wrote...
Lives are always destroyed, do you think secrecy saves more lives?
On 2009-04-04 at 10:01:04, Lee J Haywood wrote...
I think you have to account for the remorseless individuals who take advantage of any information they can obtain to inflict the most harm - physically, emotionally or financially. You could argue that a society with little privacy would harm everyone equally, including the offenders, but you haven't given any convincing reasons for wanting to live in such a place. Taken to the extreme, the wording of your opinion includes the ability for everyone to know each other's thoughts. A world in which no thought is private and yet some thoughts are taboo is the focus of some interesting science fiction.
On 2009-04-05 at 03:41:54, BorgClown wrote...
Like the individualism in the Borg, I see. I guess I'm a hopeless optimist, because when I think of sci-fi shared consciousness, I think of Gaia of the Asimov's Foundation series.
On 2009-04-05 at 08:50:19, Lee J Haywood wrote...
I was actually thinking of this Voyager episode, although the plot summaries focus on the particular incident rather than the interesting society portrayed. http://memory-alpha.org/en/wiki/Random_Thoughts I wonder if a shared consciousness has ever arisen naturally? I cannot think of any cases where it has, but you'd think that the occasional conjoined twins might share part of each other's brains. Of course, some individuals supposedly have split personalities, but that's not really sharing.
On 2009-04-05 at 14:06:01, Thelevellers wrote...
I had a guitar teacher for a while who talked about an interesting theory where the is a universal pool of, er, conciousness(?) which everyone pulls influence out of. He was primarily talking about how composers of years ago who never met or heard each others work still had certain similarities in their work. Sadly I don't remember the composers he mentioned, and don't know enough classical music to have a listen to find them myself, but it's an interesting theory. I am always entertained when I find a new band I have never heard of before, and they have 'stolen' a riff I have made up! Not convinced there's any truth to it though, I don't see how it could work...
On 2009-04-05 at 18:22:23, Baslisks wrote...
meh, if you look at composers pulling similar themes you are more looking at natural music build up. Local songs traveling and influencing people and that staying in the local music scene and then someone else picks that up and from there you get so much.
On 2009-04-06 at 01:20:45, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: That was a good episode, and I forgot about it. But it's the secrecy of the black market that made that scenario possible. If there had been public access to all their thoughts the plot would have ended before the first commercial break.
On 2009-04-06 at 01:34:23, BorgClown wrote...
@Thelevellers: Musicians have a limited range of notes to work with. Add the quirks of each instrument and that's usually narrowed down more. Musical notation gives you even more boundaries. It's amazing musicians manage to come up with such varied works.
On 2009-04-06 at 09:20:14, Lee J Haywood wrote...
http://www.todaysbigthing.com/2009/01/20 (5 min 12 sec)
On 2009-04-06 at 10:14:46, Lee J Haywood wrote...
@BorgClown: Yes, but the point (to my mind) was that it's impossible to avoid thinking about certain things - like if someone tells you that it's illegal to think about elephants. Avoiding doing or saying things is child's play by comparison, but no-one is really in control of what they think. We already have a case where an MRI scanner has been used to test innocence/guilt, effectively trying to bypass someone's conscious ability to lie and get to their memories. But memories are fallible, and just because my mind recognises the scene of the crime doesn't mean I'm guilty...
On 2009-04-07 at 02:03:25, BorgClown wrote...
Prisoner: "What did I do?" Guard: "It's illegal to think of elephants... oops!" Judge: "Off with their heads!" Prisoner: "Why???" Judge: "Because you thought of elephants! Shit..."
On 2009-04-07 at 08:35:27, Lee J Haywood wrote...
@BorgClown: It's not often anything I read on the Internet makes me laugh out loud...
On 2009-04-08 at 02:43:37, BorgClown wrote...
Well, I have hope, thanks.
On 2009-04-17 at 20:38:24, DigitalBoss wrote...
OK, let us put your IRS1040 on the web. The income tax is the biggest invasion of privacy. As a free citizen of the US, I should not have to tell the government where I work and how much money I make, it is none of their business. Our founding fathers never intended for the government to intrude so into my life.
On 2009-04-18 at 02:25:28, BorgClown wrote...
I feel you. When I was job hunting, I had to do several aptitude tests, lots of form filling, electronic and dead trees, and several medical exams, the blood, urine and nakedness ones. It's too much of a intimacy invasion, and the fittest corporations have all the advantage because the unfit ones left many people unemployed. Even so, I insist about my opinion that information sharing would make a big difference in fairness. I'd be OK to have my info public if the IRS did it with all citizens, from the illegal workers to the president.
On 2009-05-07 at 08:40:12, Lee J Haywood wrote...
@BorgClown: http://www.concurringopinions.com/archives/2009/04/justice_scalias_2.html
On 2009-05-08 at 01:50:50, BorgClown wrote...
Ha ha, he didn't care what people knew about him until they did. Good one.