Our Data is Our Digital Identity

‘What are you reading?’

‘None of your business.’

‘What are you voting?’

‘None of your business.’


Harsh, but true: it’s nobody’s business.  If you are or know an introvert intimately (like, I’m married to one), you know that their sometimes frustrating policy of “not sharing until they’re ready” is valuable, and well worth the wait.


Waiting until we’re ready to share before telling family/housemates about what we’re reading, listening to, or thinking gives us the chance to pick up what we feel like learning about of our own volition, and not what (at some subconscious level, perhaps) we think would make for pleasant conversation.  Sharing our thoughts and questions when we’re ready makes for more thoughtful conversation, and puts introverts on an even foot with the quick-to-talk (like me), who otherwise ‘dominate’ the airtime/subject/direction, no matter how much we ‘encourage’ the quiet to speak.  If the choices we make, our likes and dislikes, and our thoughts, feelings, and actions are made free from observation by others, and are, therefore, not hampered/clouded by others’ agendas, they teach us more about who we are.  Not only that: in many senses that defines who we are.


Why would it be anyone’s business online?

More importantly: Why would anyone make it their business?

This post is about freedom to choose our own dreams and how we go about discovering our path: it’s about autonomy.


Here’s an article called 

Our data is our digital identity – and we need to reclaim control

written by filmmaker Cullen Hoback for The Guardian.

in which I find the most interesting lines:

I’d love to see users at least have access to information a company has on them, then I’d like for them to have control over that data. But that’s not the priority.”

Hoback’s priority?

A private internet experience will be impossible until we get rid of the FISA amendments and overhaul the Patriot Act.”

I wonder what he’d say of Lawrence Lessig’s priority: ending corruption first.

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