There’s No Place Left to Hide
As an ‘older generation American’ I am often amazed at how dependent we have become on our technology.
My son Matt Brotherton, over at www.mabrotherton.com talks about the robots (I’m so old I thought they still called them spiders) that keep track of the movements and purchasing habits of every consumer. They collect data and analyze your personality based on every website you’ve visited, every post, every comment, every like, every phone call and every tweet you’ve made. Technology knows and understands us better than we know ourselves.
Take our favorite pastime for example. No I don’t mean baseball or (get your mind out of the gutter); I’m talking about posting on Facebook. This is the epitome of our lack of privacy. There’s only one rule, and it is as simple as it gets. If you put it on the internet, it belongs to the world –FOREVER – it is no longer yours. No amount of adding words to your Facebook post about how your stuff is your stuff is going to keep it from them. Those little robots are always working and showing you ads and things that it believes you want to see. It will even count that day you accidently clicked on ‘that sight’.
So if you’re like me, by now you should be worried about what else goes on and just exactly who is watching who do what. We already know that every keystroke on our computer, tablets, cell phones, laptops and GPS systems are closely monitored.
But it’s even worse than that. Every time you step out your front door (unless you’re living off the grid in some remote wilderness, in which case you can’t read this anyway so you don’t count) you are being tracked. By satellite radio, store security cameras, traffic light cameras, cameras that monitor the highway and weather, and on and on and on….It seems it’s true, big brother is always watching. Some studies say that the average person is seen on 75 cameras every day and in a lot of the bigger cities, it’s can be more than 300 times a day. Conservative estimates say that there are now over 30 million surveillance cameras in operation in the United States today. That is not even talking about the fact that since 2011 there are more cell phones in the United States than people. Each one with a camera. It’s estimated that the average household of 2.6 has about 24 ‘traceable‘ electronic devices.
Now, I’m not one of those government conspiracy guys that believes ‘Donald Duck Trump’ is watching me through my TV screen like it’s a two way mirror. Although, I know he would if he could. (I ‘m pretty sure he thinks he can do anything he pleases without repercussions.) Besides, we all know that only people who own the cable company can really do that. (I’m just kidding billionaire cable company guys. Please don’t send your goons after me) But it does appear that it is impossible to avoid the all-seeing eye.
Yes, I know…There are still people living in America (Land of the Free and Home of the Brave) that believe in privacy. They should be free to live their lives the way they want and what they do in their own backyard is their own business. If you are one of those naïve few, it seems “I’ve got some ‘splainin’ to do to you Lucy.”
Our privacy is gone. Vanished, caput…it went extinct along with hand written letters, a computer mouse with a roller ball, VHS tapes and the phone book. Is it a good thing or a bad thing, I will leave that up to you to debate.
I do have this final thought, a personal message from me to the youngest generation. Once you let yourself become so dependent on a thing, it’s nearly impossible to live without it when it’s gone. The recent ‘Ransomware’ attacks have taught us how quickly something we rely on can be snatched away. It’s not too late to change how you react with your friends. So please don’t let technology replace your humanity. Texting is a good thing…but just do your future self a favor and get up and go hug someone every now and again. You’ll be surprised at how good it will make you feel.