Big Uncle

George Orwell’s Big Brother is a standard term now, but those of us in the US should look around and start thinking of Big Uncle. Or maybe we should think of Big Google.

In any event, there’s much to be concerned about, and some of those concerns are the topic of this article:

“Tomgram: Peter Van Buren, 1984 Was an Instruction Manual”

When I was in high school, my classmates and I were worried about dystopias like those depicted in Brave New World and 1984. Alas, the world we now live in looks a lot like a combination of both novels. Ironically, of course, fewer of us worry. I mean, what could be wrong with a country with smart phones and the Internet?

Most of us are aware that our email is monitored, our Internet habits tracked–even if only by eager sellers, but how many of us worry that our cars can be hacked? The death of journalist Michael Hastings brought out some conspiracy theorists who claimed he was killed by car hackers. That’s totally crazy, right? Of course, who’d believe that–or this: “Car Hacking: Your Computer-Controlled Vehicle Could Be Manipulated Remotely”

Do you rest easier knowing that should you piss off the wrong people, your new car could be hacked to send you into a tree at high speed? Do you know your new microwave oven comes with a chip to track your cooking activity?

Oh well, just more reasons for those of us left who still worry to use a privacy-oriented search tool like I’m not ready to give up the Internet yet, but I am starting to look over my shoulder.



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