Tag Archives: blogs

Erosions of liberty and privacy

Perhaps this should have been my first post, in the About Me box.

I stand for freedom of speech and the right to reveal as much or little of myself as I wish. This latter right is constantly being eroded. The reason this blog is not tied up to more directories is that I don’t wish to have anonymous huge domineering companies verify me and harass me with marketing. I don’t want to be a part of Google, any more than I want to give my custom to Tesco’s. We’re in a world obsessed with identity checks and the internet makes it all too easy for anyone – an employer, an acquaintance, let alone security and police – to find out about us on unsolicited levels. A blog is an internet presence by choice, but it is also a choice with parameters I should choose. It means I can choose who sees me with what hat on. I wont be subjected to the intrusion of verification. We have that in hotels now – how does anyone stay with a secret lover when they ask for your passport? We have it when we apply for work – even if it is a casual one off shift – and we even are being checked on dating and friendship sites. And the irony is – the checkers are faceless and opaque, claiming to be acting in public interests, as if facades take away genuineness. But on another level – the one that counts – facades allow greater openess and verisimilitude. Do we feel cheated that an author has a pseudonym? Does it lessen their work? Of course not! Perhaps what is sad is that many people do not feel free to be themselves without one. But layers of the self are interesting and also natural and vital. We don’t share every facet of ourselves with everyone we meet, that is a priviledge and it respects that by being in different settings mean we can show our full personality. We are obsessed by seeing photographs but then we judge on a few traits – forgetting that blind people manage without this need, and it is possible to correspond in business or person without having seen the other person.

I also stand against jumping on bandwagons; just because some people want to make money out of an idea does not mean we all have to give in and use it. Technology is another area where freedoms are eroded. We can’t buy the old sort because it’s been discontinued  – the decision of someone who wants to make money from new ideas. This can be true of books, supermarket items (the two ought not to mix), music playing devices – and social media. It’s the biggest threat to how we communicate and badly dilutes relationships. On principle, I won’t use facebook and won’t be forced onto it because others communicate through it. They keep your profile and IP address, even after you leave. We allow too many of these erosions, and it is of major concern. Grave things always start little; it’s easy to say: it doesn’t matter… it’s the way the world is going… I can’t do anything about that. It does matter and we can do something and the cart can only gather speed if people get on it and push it. Empty the cart, untie the horse, and it is relegated back to the shed.

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