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Monday, June 17, 2013



Some people argue that loss of privacy to Facebook, Google, etc. is the same as the loss of privacy to government, so why complain? But this is a completely fallacious argument. First of all, my loss of privacy on FB, Google etc. is voluntary. Secondly, FB gives me a great tool to keep in touch with friends and family, make new friends, etc., all for free; in return, they sell ads to show me, just like TV only "better" because they are targeted. I accept that trade. Likewise for Google. Safeway uses their "courtesy card" to keep track of everything I buy, but in return gives me coupons and discounts for products. I accept that trade.

And the government? They amass all sorts of information on me, without my permission, and what do I get in return? The potential to be arrested, or have organizations I belong to disrupted COINTELPRO-style, or put on a no-fly list without any chance of appeal, or even, in a worst case scenario, killed by a drone should I be traveling overseas and visiting someone who they have mistaken for a terrorist. No, government invasions of privacy are NOT the same as FB, Google, etc. Not even close.

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