Tag Archives: online

Privacy? What’s That?

It’s amazing to me that people are all up in arms about the government gathering data on so many of us, so often, that they have to built a whole new big data center to store data about our phone calls.

Considering that most of our addresses, names, places of work and other intimate data are plastered all over privately owned sites online, I’d pretty much consider our government completely clueless if it wasn’t gathering data of its own.

Oh, you can cry all you want about invasion of privacy and tax dollars and boo hoo hoo (and it seems we’ve found an issue here for the far left and the far right to both agree on)…but for years now, most of you have been giving your personal data away online, willingly, to often be sold to companies. Facebook does it all the time, and that’s just the biggest offender.

But you do it because you like the convenience of things like online shopping and you like having social media outlets that you don’t have to pay for. You give away a bunch of really personal, valuable stuff for a pittance (allowing yourself to be screwed over) because it’s worth it to most of you to be screwed over.

Well, guess what? You get a lot of benefits from the federal government, like highways, some modicum of protection of our food supply, regulation of pharmaceuticals so that they’re less likely to kill us while treating the symptoms of a disease, disaster relief, military protection and so much more.

Does it feel good to know the government is spying on all of us all the time?

No.

But why feign surprise now? Why be outraged?

You’ve been giving it away for free for ages already.

Mind Your Virtual Manners

So, a little lesson today on manners.

Yeah, I’m like Miss Manners today…call me Deac Manners.

If someone you know personally in real life and online posts something on their blog, and you take exception with it on general philosophical grounds, here’s what you do:

One, you call or e-mail that person and talk it out or arrange to have coffee and discuss things in a normal human way, face-to-face, so that no one’s meaning gets lost

or

Two, you post a comment to that person’s blog detailing your issues with the comment he or she made in their blog post, so that there can be a healthy and detailed discussion of the issue online between you two and any other readers of the blog post.

Here is what you DON’T do:

Do not, under any circumstances, make vague, outraged snarky comments about the line in question on Twitter, 140 characters at a time, then make another tweet, after your first two or three, that actually is intended to directly insult the person who wrote the line in the blog post that irked you.

Also, if you’re considering it, don’t use Facebook either for your diatribe and direct attack against that person that you know in real life and will no doubt run into face-to-face one day.

Because, you see, Twitter and Facebook are places where comments are supposed to be quick and pithy and not try to go into deep and complex issues. They do not lend themselves to detailed and in-depth discourse.

More importantly, be a damned grown up and address the person directly if you don’t like what he or she said. This isn’t fucking high school. Going around saying nasty things in other people’s ears and impugning the person is pretty nasty passive-aggressive behavior.

You live in the same town, dammit. If it bothers you that much what the person said, own your displeasure and talk it out instead of hiding behind your computer screen.

(And yes, I’m talking about a real situation. And yes, I’ve seen other people online pull this same crap, which makes me think the Internet is making people lose all their common sense in terms of human interaction. And no, I wasn’t the person affected. Just an interested bystander)