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Privacy in a Digital Age - Essay Example

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Privacy in a Digital Age In today’s age of round-the-clock networking and socialization, the phenomenon known as privacy is like milk in black tea. First and foremost, the world today works on the mechanical, automated and 24-7 on-the-go scenario which was considered sci-fi a few years back…
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Privacy in a Digital Age
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Download file to see previous pages Lastly, the most disturbing revelation of lives becoming public is that with our lives going big and digital, they have also gone empty and shallow. Life in this age has neither the comfort nor the warmth of a simple lifestyle which prevailed a few years back. Thus, opening the shutters of one’s private space and allowing the world to barge in is perhaps a deliberate and desperate attempt to create illusions of a happy and satisfied life. The recent years have witnessed a change in the attitude of people towards their work and career choices. Earlier, jobs were mainly considered as a means to earn money and lead a comfortable life. On the contrary, today people demand quality in their work along with a handsome package, which will aid them to glide through the ladder of success. As Sun Microsystems CEO Scott McNealy quite famously declared some time ago, “Privacy is dead, deal with it.” People today are so short of time that sometimes they do not even have a private life! A major chunk of a person’s life is spent in the public eye, and thus the question for an uninterrupted personal life is nothing but a vague cloud in a clear sky. Work-related matters are eating up the hours meant for spending quality time with the loved ones. On the other hand, the situation in previous years was in complete opposition. Personal and family life was given the first priority as people were not exposed to the joys of a modern lifestyle and thus, were not so ambitious. Moreover, the definition of privacy has changed in the present age. Today, personal information is given out at the drop of a hat. As mentioned in the JWT White Paper a few years back, “Citizens of modern societies live in a world of digital data, generating an information trail as they e-mail, shop with loyalty cards, surf the Web, and make wireless calls (WPP)”. This is nothing short of invasion of privacy, but is not noticed anymore. Talking about changing perceptions towards privacy, the major devil is the internet. One can chat face-to-face with a stranger and post personal pictures on a public portal for the world to see. In midst of this structure of a never-ending social party, expecting any degree of privacy is nothing more than wishful thinking. As Simson Garfinkel writes in his book Database Nation, “We know our privacy is under attack. The problem is that we don’t know how to fight back (MSNBC).” This is exactly the dilemma which people today are facing as inhabitants of an overtly mechanized society. Whereas earlier, photographs used to be considered as the most vivid and intimate accounts of personal moments shared with special people, they have been stripped down to mere artwork put up for display. The most daunting outcome of the ailing condition of privacy is the brutal death of secrets. When personal lives are put up on display through social networking sites and one is constantly in contact with numerous people who know as much about them as an illiterate knows a book, the idea of keeping things personal appears obsolete. Unlike this situation, in previous years people used to fiercely guard their private lives and the most personal issues were shared only with a handful of people. However, the temptation of telecasting one’s lives is so alluring that all other facets of real life appear vague. The internet has turned people into public mannequins which are on display all the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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