- I’ve never been to the doctor with an embarrassing condition, but if I did go to the doctor, I’d be fine with my visit being live tweeted, including symptoms, conditions, diseases, and medications.
- I’ve never searched the internet (including Craigslist) for anything other than products, popular TV shows, or information related to my work. If I did, I’d be fine with my search history being listed at the bottom of every email I send to anyone.
- I’ve never been to an adult store, but if I did I’d be fine with the itemized receipt (including my name, address, and phone number) being copied and stapled to every lightpost and bulletin board in town.
- I never use the bathroom, masturbate, or have sex…but if I did I’d be fine with there being a live video feed of it on CNN’s homepage.
- I’ve never stayed home from work because I felt lazy.
- I’ve never said anything malicious or idiotic, but if I did I’d be fine with a recording of it being played before every conversation I have.
- I’ve never pretended to like someone even though I hate their guts, but if I did I’d be fine with a text message that says “I hate you” being sent to them from my phone each time I smiled through my teeth.
- I’ve never gotten shitfaced and embarrassed myself in front a large group of people, but if I did I’d be fine with a video of it being on Youtube’s homepage for a year.
- I’ve never had sexual thoughts about one of my teachers, bosses, underlings, or co-workers…but if I did, I’d be fine with a detailed transcription of the thought being delivered to them by bike messenger in the middle of class or the work day.
- I’ve never had thoughts of self-doubt, but if I did I’d be fine with each one being sent to my co-workers, friends, and people I don’t like.
- I’ve never had dirty or perverted thoughts, but if I did I’d be fine with each one being emailed to all my relatives and co-workers.
- I am fine with each of my dreams being transcribed, in its entirety, and sent to everyone I know, friend or foe.
- I’ve never fought with my significant other, but if I did I would do so over a loudspeaker so my neighbors could hear every word.
There are two types of people in this world with nothing to hide: ones who can say every item in the list above is true and ones who are completely misinformed. The above examples may seem extreme, but this information is being collected and it is being stored forever. Every part of your life that takes place on the internet and your phone is now completely accessible by a group of people you’ve never met (and any organizations they deem fit to view it).
There is an eye following you wherever you go, judging every movement you make. This eye is not god, and this eye does not keep you safe. The eye collects and stores, and when you deviate — donating to/joining a political party other than the two main options, advocating animal rights, coming out as gay/transgender, etc — you are watched even more closely. When will this information about you be used, and by who? All you can hope is they have your best interests in mind.
Believe me when I say that you do have something to hide. There are things you don’t want the world to know.
This is why privacy is worth fighting for.