Bradhuther’s Blog


Readings 6: Privacy and Surveillance
January 5, 2009, 3:31 pm
Filed under: Assignments | Tags: , , , , ,

Readings 6

On the Record, All the Time”

This article on life-blog creeped me out a bit and made me think of what the world and technology is really coming to. I found it a bit uncomfortable that this researcher walked around with a recorder around his neck for such a long amount of time and a sign saying our conversation is being recorded. I know if someone came up to me with that around his neck and started to talk to me I would walk away without saying anything and think he was nuts. Why is this? Maybe because I feel like our lives should be private. When I am talking to someone I might say things I do not want anyone else to hear. I feel like the idea of life-blogging through audio recording is an invasion of privacy to the people around you and of the law itself. Another reason I am anti-life blogging is because what if something your experienced was not something you want to remember. The author discusses how his child was injured and how he could not even listen back to the tape. Some memories just should not be remembered. I can think of many things I am glad I don’t have recorded, probably more than I wish I did! It also breaches the law of consent. If we are recording everything all the time, including people in the public, how can we be so sure they would allow it? I can see how this can be argued through people taking videos and pictures, and I really don’t have an answer to how it is different and I think it could be a very questionable topic. My final point is that through life-blogging, people could have the tendency to feel like they are “on stage” or have to act a certain way or say certain things. When people are being monitored they act different. I think life-blogging could turn us into programed computers and make us feel like we can not act ourselves either because of embarrassment, shyness, or nervousness.

1. How do you feel about wearing a tape recorder around your neck all the time to record memories and discussions in your life?

2. If someone came up to you with a recorder around their neck and a sign that said “our conversation will be recorded, do you think you would act in a different way than you normally would? Why or why not?

Facebook’s Beacon Just the Tip of the Privacy Iceberg”

Like the first article, I found this article informative, but at the same time a bit “creepy”. I will be honest and say I really had no idea that on Facebook our “clicking” on link are monitored. It makes me feel a bit uneasy to realize that people are monitoring what I do on certain websites. It makes me think how many websites do companies really do this for? I am starting to believe its a lot more than we think. It also makes me question if we signed up for these sites, if we signed an agreement stating our information will be constantly monitored by someone. We all have done it before: skipped the 5 paragraph essay on the terms for a website and agreed to them. Could these terms have stated we will be constantly monitored? I understand the whole idea is a great marketing strategy and can tell a lot about target market behaviors and preferences, but I do believe it is an infringement of privacy. At the same time, I also believe it is the Internet, and everything we do could and probably is constantly monitored by some “greater being”. This article made that belief more evident to me and acted as a reminder. The internet could be a more dangerous tool than we think and many things can be going on that we don’t even know about.

1. Were you aware that when we click on links and ads for Facebook our activity is being monitored?

2. Do you think this is an invasion of privacy, a good marketing research strategy, or both?

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2. If someone came up to you with a recorder around their neck and a sign that said “our conversation will be recorded, do you think you would act in a different way than you normally would? Why or why not?

I think I would definitely act differently if I knew I was being recorded, even if it was unconscious on my part (and, to be honest, it might be totally conscious on my part). Everyone wants to make and leave a good impression when they talk to people, I think, but the idea of being recorded makes that impression so much more lasting. Imagine if you knew that other people, people you had never met before, were going to be viewing or listening to your conversation at some late date and their entire opinion of you would be based of off it… it gives a lot more importance to any given conversation than might have existed before. Even someone very confident and happy with themselves, I imagine, would want to be a little more careful about what they put on record.

1. Were you aware that when we click on links and ads for Facebook our activity is being monitored?

I had no idea that Facebook was monitoring activity off site and, to be honest, I think it’s terrible. I can’t believe they’re able to do that without their users being aware of it, or without having to inform us. Facebook is always a little iffy on privacy because of the very nature of the site, but generally the control has always seemed to be on the side of the user. They can chose what they do and do not post, and whatever results of that ultimately is their responsibility. This is out of the user’s hands, for the most part, and I think that’s a whole different scenario. I wonder how people react, if the bulk of Facebook users knew about the Beacon program.

Comment by Nicole




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