It was inevitable that this day would come, particularly if you’ve been reading the tea leaves on where our technology culture and data-wielding organizations are moving towards. We are living in a present climate that permits the break-down of individual citizens’ privacy, and the propagation of mass surveillance and advertising systems driven by hardware and data engineering.
And so I am relaunching Defiant Sloth as a site dedicated to the advocacy of privacy in the modern era, and will be keeping tabs on organizations and institutions of technological and data-wielding power. It’s not enough to stand by and watch as citizens continue to use the latest smartphones, download the latest apps, upgrade software with infinitely more convoluted terms and conditions, disregard username and password housekeeping, sign up for services with little background into why they are free to use, and roam the planet (or their own country) knowingly, and perhaps willfully, permitting traceability and monitoring without clear consent. We also need to wise up to the use of this data, which can in turn by used for both good and misdirected intentions, including “weapons of math destruction” that can lead to dangerous revisions to laws, education, prison systems, advertising, and government.
So please think about continuing to follow this site. Its name will remain the same — Defiant Sloth, a credo that hints at our laziness to be as proactive about the data we create and share with organizations, government, and advertising behemoths. I hope to see you back at the end of this month to join it on a new, forward journey through technology, government, and advertising with a lens (and dare I say panache) for the defense of our right to privacy. As a nation, we can’t be lazy about the speed of change in this arena — we need to be defiant.