The Value of Privacy

There’s a saying that everything in life comes at a cost, but some are willing to pay a lot to keep their privacy. Privacy in the age of technology is an illusion. Given how much of our lives are already being monitored outside of social media, from card transactions to public cameras and internet trails, it would require a major sacrifice to achieve true privacy. To acquire true privacy, you would have to go in the middle of the woods with no phone or wifi, probably a very old car, and very isolated from the world, which would cost someone their sanity. I’m willing to sacrifice my privacy to avoid inconveniences. Inconveniences like being lost, googling something, having an iPhone, etc., Using social media as a digital photo album and keepsake sacrifices my privacy, but it’s controlled. The privacy I sacrifice is worth it to have those memories documented. I’m willing to sacrifice privacy at minor expenses. When it seems as if even the illusion of privacy is no longer there or starting to degrade is when I have when I’m no longer comfortable with sacrificing a little for “the greater good.”

Illustration — Mac World (n.d.). Asaf Hanuka.

Not being able to control what information about myself is accessible to the public or other people is uncomfortable. In dystopian films, where every step someone takes is accounted for and carefully monitored is too far. Currently, I think a lot of information can be found about a person, but there is still some privacy to which they don’t know everything. In the scenario where they don’t know me but know everything about me, I have a problem with that.

Growing up in the post-9/11 world, the idea that we have less privacy is so ingrained in our lives that it isn’t even a thought. You have to make a conscious effort to think about what your life could have been or would have been before the extra precautions that invaded your privacy were implemented. The only reward I would expect is the one they promised, which is safety, which is also an illusion and not guaranteed

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