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Download Blown to Bits: Your Life, Liberty, and Happiness After the by Hal Abelson, Ken Ledeen, Harry Lewis PDF

By Hal Abelson, Ken Ledeen, Harry Lewis

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Every day, billions of photos, information tales, songs, X-rays, television exhibits, telephone calls, and emails are being scattered all over the world as sequences of zeroes and ones: bits. We can’t get away this explosion of electronic info and few people wish to–the merits are too seductive. The know-how has enabled unparalleled innovation, collaboration, leisure, and democratic participation.

But an analogous engineering marvels are shattering centuries-old assumptions approximately privateness, id, unfastened expression, and private keep an eye on as an increasing number of information of our lives are captured as electronic data.

Can you regulate who sees all that non-public information regarding you? Can electronic mail be actually personal, whilst not anything seems inner most? Shouldn’t the net be censored the best way radio and television are? Is it rather a federal crime to obtain track? if you use Google or Yahoo! to look for whatever, how do they come to a decision which internet sites to teach you? Do you continue to have loose speech within the electronic global? Do you may have a voice in shaping executive or company rules approximately any of this?

Blown to Bits bargains provocative solutions to those questions and tells fascinating real-life tales. This ebook is a serious warning call to the human results of the electronic explosion.

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Additional info for Blown to Bits: Your Life, Liberty, and Happiness After the Digital Explosion

Sample text

When “Josh” turned against her, writing “You are a bad person and everybody hates you…. The world would be a better place without you,” Megan committed suicide. Yet Josh did not exist. Josh was a MySpace creation—but of whom? An early police report stated that the mother of another girl in the neighborhood acknowledged “instigating” and monitoring the account. That woman’s lawyer later blamed someone who worked for his client. Whoever may have sent the final message to Megan, prosecutors are having a hard time identifying any law that might have been broken.

Wherever we go, we leave digital footprints, while computers of staggering capacity reconstruct our movements from the tracks. Computers re-assemble the clues to form a comprehensive image of who we are, what we do, where we are doing it, and whom we are discussing it with. Perhaps none of this would have surprised Orwell. Had he known about electronic miniaturization, he might have guessed that we would develop an astonishing array of tracking technologies. Yet there is something more fundamental that distinguishes the world of 1984 from the actual world of today.

National and state borders still count, and count a lot. If a book is bought online in England, the publisher and author are subject to British libel laws rather than those of the homeland of the author or publisher. , plaintiffs have to prove the guilt of the defendants. An ugly downside to the explosion of digital information and its movement around the world is that information may become less available even where it would be legally protected (we return to this subject in Chapter 7, “You Can’t Say That on the Internet”).

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