There are some things that have been bothering me lately. There’s the government’s horrible track record with technology, capped by the Great British Firewall, with which David Cameron and friends do their best to hobble the internet. For the children.
I don’t think it’s doing the children any good.
Of course, blocking pornography from children (even if only in theory) is one thing – one of the many arguments that oppose this approach is that it’s a slippery slope. And there are signs that no time has been wasted, and we appear to be on our way towards slipping already.
And then there’s the spying.
If you want to keep a secret, you must also hide it from yourself.
I have almost taken the opposite approach, and try to make my online interactions public, as much as possible. But Mr. Orwell’s advice seems inadequate. Another line from the same novel tells us that Big Brother is watching. And it’s true, but Big Brother doesn’t only watch us. It watches our friends. And it can learn a lot about us, if our friends don’t hold their secrets as closely as we do.
Between the corporations and GCHQ, it may not be possible to hide secrets online anymore. Even if you can’t find them yourself.
I am surprised about the degree to which these things bother me. So when the Open Rights Group put out a call for support last week, needing more member in order to hire a legal director and fight these sorts of things in the courts, I jumped in.
I put my money where my mouth is. Or, rather, where my mouth ought to be.
The Open Rights Group met their goal, but that shouldn’t stop you from following in my footsteps and joining as well. This sort of legal work is expensive, and it sometimes seems as though there’s a new front every week.