If you have something that you don’t want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn’t be doing it in the first place.
- Eric Schmidt
This is Schmidt verbalizing conventional moralistic nonsense, which would be fine if he were just another private citizen, although it is conservative mumbo jumbo.
The problem is that he is the head of Google, who potentially could amass damaging evidence about people’s unconventional interests, unpopular political views, or who knows what. If the moral philosophy of Google turns out to be ‘don’t do anything that you wouldn’t want your grandmother, your boss, or the IRS to know about’ then we have the possibility of bad privacy/publicy decisions from Google.
We are not owed the right of privacy and publicy conditionally, only if we don’t do, or think, or say something that would offend the general population. We have these rights unconditionally, and Google’s chief executive officer should studiously avoid and comments that suggest these rights are granted to us by governments, society, or corporate behemoths. These are inalienable rights, not open to tinkering, and especially not open to being rolled by political force.
- Schmidt’s “Just Move” Joke About Google Street View & How It Went Missing (Danny Sullivan/Search Engine Land) (techmeme.com)
- When Your CEO Suggests Moving In Response To Privacy Questions, Time For A New CEO (techdirt.com)
- The Creepiest TV Moments of Google’s CEO [Video] (gawker.com)
- Google’s Schmidt apologizes for latest weird non-joke (news.cnet.com)
Web anthropologist, futurist, author. My focus is the future, and the tectonic forces pushing business, media, and society into an unclear and accelerating future. more.
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