The last time I posted on this blog was on Aug 9, 2011. Feels like an eternity, if you ask me, even with law school and all.
One thing that I have noticed during my tenure as a grad student is that even though I am in a different academic institution (law school), there’s still a large amount of Philosophy to be discovered and discussed. The only problem is that, as a student, you’re generally bogged down with so much reading (and a very structured atmosphere) that the last thing you’d want to talk about in your free time is Philosophy, especially if it gets you back into talking about the law.
But spring break is at hand for me, and I’ve been itching to make a post here for some time. The topic, as the title of this post gives away, is with privacy. I’ve found that over the past few years we’ve experienced great advances in technology — ones that make our lives easier, cooler, or perhaps even both. But what that seems to also bring is a decrease in our privacy. Companies are trying to do whatever they can to sell you a product you’d want, and in the process some are even willing to invade (or, to put it in a more politically correct manner, are “apparently” invading) one’s privacy in order to get that information. The searches we make, the e-mails we send, the websites we visit, the things we list in online applications — all of this seems to be more and more “fair game” for advertisers in an attempt to make their customers happy (the companies).
If things are this way, then I’d like to ask a simple, yet hopefully thought-provoking question: Where has our privacy gone? And, at this rate, are we really going to even be entitled to privacy in the future? For Tort law, one important requirement for an Invasion of Privacy claim is that one have an expectation of privacy in the thing or activity that the claim is covering. But with what Google, Apple, and other companies are apparently doing, and with the seemingly more invading products that are coming out day by day, can we even expect to have such an expectation?
Call me a cynic, but I don’t see any good prospects for our expectations of privacy if the Internet and other related technology continues to advance and be such an integral part of our lives as it is. And if things get to where M. T. Anderson’s book (Feed) proscribes, then privacy might not stand much of a chance.
But we can’t stop using the technology, either, now can we? Looks like we’ve got a rock-and-a-hard-place problem here.
What do you guys think?
George Arut (“The Meager Weakling”)
P.S. – Does anyone know how the All Powerful One is doing in CA? I remember that he was at some conference with Dr. Kline some months ago, but I haven’t heard anything about him since.