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Kaa
12-10-2009, 12:13 PM
Eric Schmidt, Google CEO: "If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place."

I wonder what happened to the "Don't be evil" thing...

Kaa

Keith Wilson
12-10-2009, 12:15 PM
Good advice : If you have something that you don't want anyone to know about, for God's sake don't do it on the internet!!

Kaa
12-10-2009, 12:20 PM
Good advice : If you have something that you don't want anyone to know about, for God's sake don't do it on the internet!!

True on one level, quite untrue on another :-)

I can communicate over the internet in perfect secrecy. I can post things quite anonymously. Etc., etc.

Kaa

Paul Pless
12-10-2009, 12:24 PM
I can communicate over the internet in perfect secrecy. I can post things quite anonymously. Etc., etc.

KaaSo Kaa's not you're real name?:confused: who knew??;):p

pefjr
12-10-2009, 12:34 PM
True on one level, quite untrue on another :-)

I can communicate over the internet in perfect secrecy. I can post things quite anonymously. Etc., etc.

Kaayou should not be doing this, you will be exposed.

Kaa
12-10-2009, 12:37 PM
So Kaa's not you're real name?

Why would you think that? :D

But I'm here pseudonymously. That's not real anonymity.

Kaa

Keith Wilson
12-10-2009, 12:44 PM
The Committee knows who you are.

TimH
12-10-2009, 12:50 PM
Watched 10 questions for the Dalai Lama last night.

Interesting how Google and Yahoo jumped right up and censor whatever China wants them to censor.

If you do a search for Dalai Lama in China you only get negative and/or fabricated information about him.

Ian McColgin
12-10-2009, 12:59 PM
There are important issues of snooping and data mining - individual, corporate and governmental - that must be addressed to prevent trivial, intrusive and annoyingly commercial use of people's internet traffic, but ultimately Schmidt is correct that internet users should assume that whatever they are doing can be viewed.

One deep assumption of the internet was openness. That's been modified by the extent to which the net is used to convey propriatory research and the way email feels enough like traditional mail that people make assumptions of privacy. Not to mention how networked computers are utterly ubiquitous in business and government, handling material traditionally confidential. There are situations where on may establish privacy both through restricted access and encryption, but the minute you get to a public place, and search engins are public places, you really must drop any assumption of privacy.

This is by no means a settled field.

perldog007
12-10-2009, 01:00 PM
We are borg

the assumption among the technically inclined has always been that the only way a computer is secure occurs in a vacuum of access, physical or remote. Then the computer becomes useless.

In other words, if a computer shares information with another computer it can be compromised. If one has physical access to a computer, it can be compromised.

I never ever assume that anything I do with a computer is secret, online or off.

There are others who assume differently and Ian is correct, this is by no means settled.

Uncle Duke
12-10-2009, 01:40 PM
This is the same Eric Schmidt who got outraged when personal information about him, freely available on the Internet, all obtained by Google searches, was published in an article about online privacy and blackballed the reporters, and their company, for a year.
http://money.cnn.com/2005/08/05/technology/google_cnet/

Bruce Schneier has a wonderful essay about the value of privacy:
http://www.schneier.com/essay-114.html

A future in which privacy would face constant assault was so alien to the framers of the Constitution that it never occurred to them to call out privacy as an explicit right. Privacy was inherent to the nobility of their being and their cause. Of course being watched in your own home was unreasonable. Watching at all was an act so unseemly as to be inconceivable among gentlemen in their day. You watched convicted criminals, not free citizens. You ruled your own home. It's intrinsic to the concept of liberty.

Kaa
12-10-2009, 02:00 PM
...but ultimately Schmidt is correct that internet users should assume that whatever they are doing can be viewed.

That is not what he's saying at all. Read it again:

"If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place."

He's equating privacy with doing something bad, evil, wrong.

Bruce Schneider wrote an essay back in 2006 (that Uncle Duke linked to above) that eloquently refutes that approach:


Privacy protects us from abuses by those in power, even if we're doing nothing wrong at the time of surveillance. We do nothing wrong when we make love or go to the bathroom. We are not deliberately hiding anything when we seek out private places for reflection or conversation. We keep private journals, sing in the privacy of the shower, and write letters to secret lovers and then burn them. Privacy is a basic human need.

[...]

For if we are observed in all matters, we are constantly under threat of correction, judgment, criticism, even plagiarism of our own uniqueness. We become children, fettered under watchful eyes, constantly fearful that -- either now or in the uncertain future -- patterns we leave behind will be brought back to implicate us, by whatever authority has now become focused upon our once-private and innocent acts. We lose our individuality, because everything we do is observable and recordable.

[...]

This is the loss of freedom we face when our privacy is taken from us. This is life in former East Germany, or life in Saddam Hussein's Iraq. And it's our future as we allow an ever-intrusive eye into our personal, private lives.

Too many wrongly characterize the debate as "security versus privacy." The real choice is liberty versus control. Tyranny, whether it arises under threat of foreign physical attack or under constant domestic authoritative scrutiny, is still tyranny. Liberty requires security without intrusion, security plus privacy. Widespread police surveillance is the very definition of a police state. And that's why we should champion privacy even when we have nothing to hide.Kaa

P.I. Stazzer-Newt
12-10-2009, 02:03 PM
you should not be doing this, you will be exposed.

Spelling - FFS - that's E-P-O-X-I-E-D.

Kaa
12-10-2009, 02:14 PM
The Committee knows who you are.

...and the Big Brother loves me :D

By the way: Vernor Vinge's True Names was written in 1981.

http://www.facstaff.bucknell.edu/rickard/TRUENAMES.pdf

Kaa

Bruce Hooke
12-10-2009, 02:23 PM
Eric Schmidt, Google CEO: "If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place."

I wonder what happened to the "Don't be evil" thing...

Kaa

To me the context for this is critical. Was he saying this was the way he thought things should be or was he saying that this is the way he thought things are? Was he talking about life in general or the digital world in particular?

If he was saying that was the way he thought things should be it sounds deeply Orwellian! Even more so if he was not just talking about the Internet. When do our thoughts become public information? :eek:

On the other hand, I could say "if you don't want to get hit by a car you should not run across the highway," without saying anything about whether I think it is acceptable that this is the case.

Bruce Taylor
12-10-2009, 02:35 PM
The Committee knows who you are.

I think I know what the Committee thinks they know, and I have my doubts.

Rick-Mi
12-10-2009, 05:56 PM
Our lives are an open book.

Kaa
12-11-2009, 10:50 AM
To me the context for this is critical. Was he saying this was the way he thought things should be or was he saying that this is the way he thought things are?

Kinda both. He's saying that's the way things *are*, and that's fine.

But the real issue is that he equates doing something in private with doing something bad. Hiding something to him is evidence of wrongdoing.

Don't forget that it's Google we're talking about.

Kaa

Keith Wilson
12-11-2009, 03:40 PM
Kaa, thanks very much for the link to the story. I'll finish it tonight. (I think "true names" is a reference to Ursula K. LeGuin's Earthsea stories.)