If You Have Nothing To Hide You Have Nothing To Fear

I really need to hunt down the first person who used that and murder them... or desecrate their grave. Yeah, tell that to the victims of persecution throughout time. Early Christians, Protestants, Catholics, anyone that the Witchfinder General didn't like, Jews, Muslims, women, and that's just the tip of the religious stuff in Europe, never mind ethnic cleansing, homophobia and misogyny, class/caste systems...

I'm not talking crimes committed by a hateful minority here like the KKK or EDL. No, all crimes and abuses listed above (for starters) have been carried out by governments against the people they govern (or would like to govern but find it easier to demonise, repress, torture and murder).

Oh but this is different, we live in more civilised times. Lolz! No body of power (law making, religious, commercial) is incorruptible. Every body of power is only a few steps from abusing its authority outright. Once it's big enough to feel it can go unchallenged it will stop serving and start using.

Google just got that big.

Now, people could argue that Google was always using us, just as government always uses the people (to stay in power, to make money, to fight religious and unnecessary economic wars). This is the way of life; we all use each other to some degree. However, there needs to be a balance. Both sides need to benefit equally. This goes for everything from friendship and romance to governing a nation state. The bigger the difference in the size of the sides, the more the largest needs to give back to the little guy, just to keep the power houses in check.

Google has shifted the balance. It's actually been doing it for years, slowly creeping into every technological niche it could to gain knowledge. Say it all together now; knowledge is power, power corrupts.

Now, Google say that they don't sell any of the information they gather to third parties. Okay, so right NOW they don't. Who's to stop them doing it two years down the line? The government? Of what country? Hello global market! Just as Pirate Bay get around American law by basing their servers outside of America's ever growing grasp, so too could Google. And hey, what if it IS your government that they're selling information to?

Oh well, then we get back to the old "if you've got nothing to fear..." argument. Just go reread the first paragraph so that I don't have to repeat myself. Government changes, laws change* and business practices change. All companies are capable of going down this path, of course. The MPAA tipped the balance a long time ago, as did Murdoch's empire and they both use the unbalanced nature of their power to their own advantages at the cost of the public at large. Google can do the same and believing in their unofficial "do no evil" motto isn't going to stop them if they put their mind to it.

So, before 1st March I'm going to be looking into moving my blog and getting a bunch of new emails and then changing various sites I'm registered to to use the new emails. Eugh, Google, just change your damn mind and don't install this new policy!

*and are used to persecute people the state doesn't like, people with a voice.


I'm keeping the blog here but am re-routing a bunch of other stuff and looking into getting a new phone *sigh*. Seems silly, I know, as I pretty much use the same username EVERYWHERE but I'd like the option to sign into places WITHOUT it being linked back to this username. 
blog comments powered by Disqus