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Google Is Spyware

Fortunately there is an easy (and better*) alternative.



Lessons From George Orwell’s ‘1984’

This article is a companion to my recent post The Daily Grind.

Lessons from George Orwell’s ‘1984’

(For Beth, with love.)


Eric Arthur Blair


He blew the whistle
Absorbed in technology
They took no notice


“Big Data” – 1984 Anyone?

“Lauren Feeney: So what did you finally pick for your Word of the Year?

Geoffrey Nunberg: I went with “Big Data.” Not everybody is familiar with it. It didn’t get the wide exposure of “47 percent”, but it was the talk of Silicon Valley and Davos, and it was all over the place in venues like Forbes, The Economist and The New York Times tech and business sections. And whether or not you knew what it was called, you knew about its effects – the software called analytics that chews over all the data we’re kicking up from our web surfing, our tweets, our purchases, our cable boxes, our Facebook pages and our cell phones. There are Big Data analytics behind a lot of the threats to our privacy – those ads that follow us as we move around the Web, the websites that sell or swap our personal information, the “stalker apps” that track our physical location – that has to be a strong candidate for creepiest word of 2012. And even more ominously, there are the security agencies that are combing over our travel and credit card records trolling for possible terrorists. Those have some people wondering if we’re moving in increments toward the surveillance state – just last March the Justice Department authorized agencies to retain for five years the personal data of people who aren’t suspected of terrorism.” (My highlight.)

This is IMHO a pretty thought-provoking article, especially for anyone who is interested in language, politics and freedom. Although it concerns itself with the US, the issues discussed are not unique to the USA by any means.

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