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Tuesday, March 13, 2007


If you haven’t already heard the term, my definition of the individual today who has no concern over the state of their privacy is an “apathetic.” One who goes merrily on their way thinking it could never happen to them, thus, giving away their personal data for anything from convenience to cheap product awards. Matt Helton submitted two papers to the Columbia Law School titled: “Public Apathy Losing the War for Privacy and a Free Internet Part I and II.” It is primarily directed to the Internet, but makes so many excellent points on privacy and the identity crisis that I felt like doing a series of posts that show the thinking of higher education on this issue. First, Helton finds the lack of success by academics, a few politicians, and privacy interest groups “staggering.” The reason is a culture that is paralyzed by private interests. He feels corporations acquire your sensitive data to manipulate consumers, and government uses it to control its citizens. And all this is possible because there is no outcry from the population; you apathetics have allowed it to happen. Just think about this basic premise related to the status of your privacy today for awhile. Helton’s reason for an absent public in Part 2.

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