Is it possible to use a computer and preserve your privacy?

Privacy and Algorithms


If nothing else, both articles gave me much pause; the information provided by Lindsey C. Kim and Martha Fay Buris made me think before typing and hitting “enter.” Internet use has become as normal as the air we breathe–hyperbole? maybe, maybe not. There was a time when I considered something like information privacy to be someone else’s worry. Data? Agency? Flow? What about it?

I just want to scroll on my iPhone while in bed–every liked post a lullaby. Algorithms? Okay… and? Maybe it isn’t so bad having a curated social media/internet experience. Or so I thought. And I considered all of the thoughts people transcribe into Tweets or Instagram stories–a good deal of them private. I thought about all of the things we delete that aren’t actually deleted but stored somewhere, by someone; now, tech articles about data privacy began to read like Stephen King’s works–weird and scary. Quoted by Lindsey C. Kim, John Cheney-Lippold–digital studies expert writes:

A simple web search from even the most unsophisticated of smartphones generates a lengthy record of new data. This includes your initial search term, the location of your phone, the time and day when you searched, what terms you searched for before/after, your phone’s operating system, your phone’s IP address, and even what apps you installed on your phone. Add onto this list everything else you do with that phone, everything else you do on your computer, everything else that might be recorded about your life by surveilling agents. (4)

In Conclusion

Everything we do on the internet is monitored or recorded or kept locked away somewhere. Everything. We should all be mindful of what we post on the web; once it is on there, it is literally out of our control–never to return again. And with this being said, I am never going on the internet for as long as I live.


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