Sunday, July 04, 2010
I'd like to encourage people to take a look at the video embedded below, which is a talk by Cory Doctorow about copyright and democracy. If you don't know, Doctorow is co-editor of boingboing.net and a best-selling author. He makes many fascinating arguments about the problems of copyright creep, the democratic state, and the ways in which our lives could be monitored and affected by third parties that are allowed access to end-users' personal information. These third parties could be governments or, increasingly, they could be corporates. Consider the myriad possibilities for interactions between corporates and governments that if either or both had access to tons of information about us and could simultaneously have control over what is on our computers. We already know that this has happened with Amazon and the Kindle, with Apple and its apps, with Google and Android - the companies take stuff off the end users' device that they don't want there despite protests by the end users. Crazy stuff. Imagine that by a government too. Scary stuff. Consequently, I don't believe that the four horsemen of the infocalypse - terrorists, drug dealers, pedophiles, or organized crime - or copyright infringements constitute sufficient justification for attempts to monitor my and your internet activity and the applications we happen to have on our devices. Anyway, watch the video. It's illuminating.