[LINK] Change your name
jwhit at janwhitaker.com
Tue Aug 17 15:50:49 EST 2010
[the comment at the end is a different twist - you'll to go look at
it yourself if you're interested]
Google on privacy: change your name
August 17, 2010 - 3:05PM
Google's chief has put forth a novel solution for today's teenagers
whose wild online antics threaten to follow them into their adult
life: change your name.
His comments come as the search giant attempts to allay public
concern about plans to commercialise its ever-increasing pile of
data. Schmidt's prediction for those wanting to distance themselves
from their past came as part of a broad-based internet discussion
"I don't believe society understands what happens when everything is
available, knowable and recorded by everyone all the time," he said,
as he predicted that all young people might one day be entitled to
change their names in order to disown compromising activities
captured on friends' social media sites.
This is the not the first time Google's chief has weighed in on the
privacy debate. He was once quoted as saying: "If you have something
that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it
in the first place."
The debate, however, has shifted to vulnerable groups like teens, who
many fear will be unfairly penalised for youthful follies when they
enter the adult world.
Schmidt predicts that a culture of recommendation will soon take over
from search engines, with location-based services combining with
users' personal interests and needs to suggest a particular path of action.
''One idea is that more and more searches are done on your behalf
without you needing to type. . . I actually think most people don't
want Google to answer their questions," he told the WSJ. "They want
Google to tell them
they should be doing next."
In spite of the social danger to young people, Schmidt argues against
regulation of the internet on the basis that users would surely
protest against Google doing anything "creepy" with their data.
But even if Google chooses not to exploit its position of trust,
privacy campaigners warn there are plenty of others prepared to have
a crack at mining all the public available information for commercial
gain, meaning there are no easy answers for the company that once
vowed to "do no evil".
Market researcher, Hitwise, said Google accounted for 93.5 per cent
of the Australian search market over the past month, and a vast store
of personal information also exists in social applications like
Facebook, Twitter, and Flickr.
Money lenders, employers, landlords and insurance companies are just
a few organisations that might benefit from personal profiles of
potential customers, according to privacy campaigners who say once
photographs or other compromising data appears online, it becomes
almost impossible to remove.
According to the WSJ, a data-trading marketplace could gather
personal information from numerous sources, including Google, and
offer highly personalised tracking of individuals.
"Tiny companies like BlueKai and eXelate Media already offer some of
these services, pressuring Google to match them," it said.
Write Web blog, Schmidt had this to say at a recent conference: "Show
us 14 photos of yourself and we can identify who you are. You think
you don't have 14 photos of yourself on the internet? You've got
Facebook photos! People will find it's very useful to have devices
that remember what you want to do, because you forgot...But society
isn't ready for questions that will be raised as result of
This story was found at:
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
jwhit at janwhitaker.com
Our truest response to the irrationality of the world is to paint or
sing or write, for only in such response do we find truth.
~Madeline L'Engle, writer
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