Is Eric Schmidt Big Brother?

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Google CEO Eric Schmidt in a recent interview said: “I think judgment matters,” said Schmidt. “If you have something that you don’t want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn’t be doing it in the first place. If you really need that kind of privacy, the reality is that search engines — including Google — do retain this information for some time and it’s important, for example, that we are all subject in the United States to the Patriot Act and it is possible that all that information could be made available to the authorities.”Security expert Bruce Schneier countered: “Privacy protects us from abuses by those in power, even if we’re doing nothing wrong at the time of surveillance. 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.”

Is that the kind of future that we want?

1 COMMENT

  1. Both Microsoft and Google are evil. Choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil. Neither deserve recognition, support or to be spat upon. Privacy is about freedom and choice, not necessarily “hiding things”. And what is so bad about practicing privacy? I believe that people should maintain privacy to a certain degree. These corporations don't need to know everything about you. [Personal] “Information” is a hot commodity seller. Information = profits. Money is the “god” of planet earth. Money is the root of evil. As the old saying goes, a fool and his money soon part.

  2. Both Microsoft and Google are evil. Choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil. Neither deserve recognition, support or to be spat upon. Privacy is about freedom and choice, not necessarily “hiding things”. And what is so bad about practicing privacy? I believe that people should maintain privacy to a certain degree. These corporations don't need to know everything about you. [Personal] “Information” is a hot commodity seller. Information = profits. Money is the “god” of planet earth. Money is the root of evil. As the old saying goes, a fool and his money soon part.