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or: on the internet nobody knows you’re a cat

a common known complaint about the interwebz and using modern technology  has always been this whinery about how everybody looses their private sphere and nothing is secret and blablabla. i never really understood the fuzz about this topic, and let me tell you why. (i will write in a perspective of speaking to a fictional “you”, just for the fun of it, ha (don’t take it personally!))

first of all, how can any sensitive information get into the net, when YOU are the one controlling what ‘the internet’ knows about you?? it is completely your decision what information about you you post. so is there a real danger of getting unwanted information out, if you are perfectly able of just shut the fuck up? or are you just too dumb to differ sensitive information from legit one, that does not put you in any unwanted position? hell, maybe you post something by accident, because you were unaware of the possible outcome, or you were drunk. who knows. but my point is, in the end it is YOU who puts your information in the net, so why blame the technology, while it is YOU who is to blame for being unaware (read: dumb).
or well, anyone else can be dumb, too, or simply evil, and put stuff in the net you don’t want to be published. even though you have THE LAW (<- read this in Judge Dredd voice) on your side, that doesn’t help. and yeah well, this may be the most common of sources for unwanted leaked information – but still no need to blame the techs for. it’s a human thing. human – like you. so stop complaining.

second of all, and this is something that cracks me up A LOT, what facts do you think are “private” enough not to be distributed for others to get informed about them? i have read and heard about so many strange things that certain people find worthy of being “too private” for the public, which are – from my point of view – not private at all. for example photos of you, or your house. like… where do i even begin…
have you ever, you know, LEFT THE HOUSE? then you may have recognized that there are other people out there who are not you, and those people are perfectly capable of seeing you! and why don’t you slap every random guy in the face who looks at your house? because you kinda know that the outer appearance of your house is nothing that can be considered to be private. as are photos of you, your address, some sort of contact information… see, everybody is able to TALK to you, and you just can’t ‘ignore’ when somebody does that (well, you can, obviously, but i’m kinda cereal here). with other contact information, like your email, telephone number or address your have the chance to ignore stuff, so for me that fact leads such information to be less considered to be private than the existence of your very own presence. any contact information is NOT private, because you certainly want to be in contact with people, and they are less… ehm, crucial than actually talking to you.
i once was very buffled about this story i experienced: i browsed through google maps and found a house that was censored – it’s form my city, and i passed this house a few times and know that there is nothing worthy pixeled out of sight that can harm anyone. the owners simply did not want their house to be public on google maps (note that i did not say ‘on the web’, because IF i wanted to i could still make a picture of that house and post it anywhere and nobody can stop me MHUAHAHAHA). and then this happened: during christmas time i came along that said house and it was full and full of christmas decoration stuff! with red fur and a fake santa and all the crap. so… why do you do that, decorate your house? to make it look good, because people WILL see it and you want it to be looking good for them. especially christmas stuff attracts attention. and i kinda think that is a great contrary to not wanting your house to be seen on the net. doesn’t make much sense to me.

ANYWAY, to cut the chase and come to the point: so far i have loosely established that there rarely is information that can turn out to be crucial to your life and you are in control of the actual sensitive information. because the actual sensitive stuff that can ruin your life is something nobody asks from you to inform others about. like are you a child molester? do you listen to christian country? do you have three nipples? you don’t have to give that information, but sure you can, if you want to.

and that brings me to my final point: those facts granted, sets you into a position of nearly total control of what the informations are that shape your presence in the web! you certainly want to look good to others, or create a specific picture of you for others to see, and by giving exactly the information that underlines this picture of you, you reach that goal (approximately).

what everybody does on the web – conscious or not – is that with every bit of information we give, we  create a virtual avatar of ourself, shaped after a specific image you have in mind. and every single bit you give does participate in that process, like when you post on facebook what you had for lunch, tweet about the movie you’re just watching or writing obscure blog entries about how you think the world works.

and the more info you share with the world, the more specific that image of you gets. and were control is, manipulation is not far.
you already kinda “lie” to others by selecting what sort of information gets into the open.  like, everybody is allowed to know you like cheap soap operas, but hell nobody should every know about your diaper fetish. if “lying” is the term that applies to this behavior is questionable, sure, and i think i would refuse to use that term, because nobody can ever tell EVERYTHING, even if he wanted to. but technically that is what it is: you are lying to everybody, every day, with everything you say.

so, go one step further and actively manipulate what those things are that shape you. like tweaking some information every now and then. for example by writing a vastly long and very personal blog entry about stuff that most people consider to be very personal, but that actually don’t harm you. and put some false information between this somewhere.
be honest for like 99% and lie 1% – this isn’t something evil, because the 99% you do correct are more truth than what most people with privacy issues ever post about themself on the web. it’s a question of relativity.

this small fact is easily being accepted as being a real fact, because of the relativity of things. so, for example you can write about very personal stuff, a lot, like how one day on that party you screwed a good friend and lied about it later and you regret it and you’re now a better person and everybody should know that and you are a cat. why should anyone even question any of those facts – and even if, which of those facts is to be questioned?

so, see? there is no fear of how personal stuff on the net can ruin your life. just throw a shitload of information out there and soon nobody can differ any more from the crucial and the harmless stuff. hey, you can take a lot of stuff from all the personal things i wrote about and totally try to screw with me and ruin my image forever, but see, you don’t even know if i always were honest or not. did i lie? if so, what was not true? and why should i even have lied in the first place?
see? it’s a clusterfuck and you better not think about it. things are right as they are and everybody on the net always speaks the truth. nobody can know anything for sure, but we just have to take any information for granted anyway.

i’m a cat. signing out.

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last modified: 2011-Jan-09, 22:33:20
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comments (3)

  1. Netti | 2011-Jan-10, 7:02:03 |

    Hell, how did you know about my diaper fetish? *lol* They censored my “house” on google, too. I should take some pictures… :)

  2. Dani | 2011-Jan-10, 22:49:26 |

    You were a cat all this time!? O:
    …I have to stop believing everything I read on internet XD

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