Wednesday, September 1, 2010
A while ago I wrote about conspiracies. Laughed about them really, in a half-hearted way. Because on the whole, I think most of them are pretty silly. Hangar 18. Lake monsters. Fake moon landings. I mean, come on.
But lately, I’ve been a little more worried about information dissemination. I’m the first one to admit that I’ve looked up information on people I’m interested in. I’m amazed at how much information is available for free online. In a matter of minutes, you can find out someone’s current address, businesses they own or are employed by and of course, their criminal record. When I lived in Kentucky, I told potential suitors that if we’re going to go on date, you might as well disclose all of your speeding tickets- Because I will look you up on the clerk of courts website. And I did.
I dated someone who was pretty scrupulous about removing his name from the web. In fact, I only found one or two mentions of him online, on an association website. After I told him, I think he called them and asked that his name be removed. I’m not sure why, really. But like a friendly ghost, he prefers to hover behind the scenes, instead of accepting the inevitable Internet disclosure.
I find myself trying to be more cautious about what I say these days. I don’t know why. It’s not like anyone cares. But like that dealer in Pulp Fiction (“Cell phone! This is a Cell Phone!”), I’ve been loathe to disclose too many details over the phone- or over email.
Because although it probably sounds silly, lately, I’ve been worried that someone may be listening in. And I can’t help but wonder, in the age of information overload, if someday I’ll be sitting in a courtroom while my many transgressions, from phone calls to emails (I can’t even get into what I’ve written here) are read back to me.
Start thinking about who might be listening in and it never stops. In fact, it only gets a lot worse. I have an odd habit, when I meet someone who seems familiar, of asking them if they know me. As opposed to the more traditional “Do I know you?” And I’m loathe to expose someone that I think may know me but for some reason or another, may not want other people to know that they know me.
That’s some screwed-up logic, I know.