Friday, August 12, 2005

Minority report on the identity trail

Hilary Young on the indentity trail confesses she doesn't care much about informational privacy and companies collecting details about her so they can target appropriate offers in her direction.

"Now before you revoke my membership in the On the Identity Trail project, let me defend myself. I think one of the most important things this project is doing is imagining the implications of various future legal, policy and technological changes so that we as a society can make informed decisions about what we want to happen. If, knowing the consequences, people want to live in a Minority Report-type world where ads are targeted to specific individuals, that's fine by me. The problem is that we risk ending up in such situations, not because we've chosen them, but because we have made a number of incremental decisions that led to an undesirable result only because we didn't have the foresight to avoid it."

Incremental ill-informed decisions that lead to undesirable results are, unfortunately, all too common in the technology arena.

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