Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Public lives : does the internet know too much about us?

Michael Savage wrote a revisionist view in the Independent Extra 0n Monday 30 June. Expecting it to be another polemic about loss of privacy, I was interested to read about the positive benefits of more open profiles. He tells us about how much he can find out about an average internet user : his father. Perhaps this could be replicated for a third of the population of this country. There is no going back : the information is there. " We may be used to hearing about the inconsequential tittle-tattle of celebrities, but we may all have to get used to living our lives in the full glare of the public spotlight."
Some people are taking the line that this can be a good thing."As all the barriers between our public and private personas come tumbling down online, we may well realise that it's not such a bad thing. Digital curtain-twitching could be the means for creating a more relaxed, honest and unashamedly open society." Perhaps Boris Johnson wouldn't have lost his Deputy, or political leaders wouldn't be so paranoid about the drugs they took wile at University. Perhaps the News of the World wouldn't have so much to write about!
He continues by suggesting that the internet makes us more of a global village, bringing people together, where people know more about each other, and paradoxically leading to new interest groups, and linkages being made. Interesting stuff.

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