Earlier this week, Congress sent to Pres. Trump a bill that would allow Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to sell data regarding users’ searches and browsing history to third-party advertisers. This made me wonder, once again, what expectations computer users should have regarding privacy. (I’m not sure that I have such expectations; do you? Would you be incensed if, for instance, an employer called you on the carpet for posting on social media while you were supposed to be working?)
On a more comic note: I’ve noticed people bringing their smartphones with them everywhere: doctors’ offices, churches, bathrooms, restaurants–everywhere. Smartphones are the new cigarettes: we reach for them as soon as we wake up, enjoy them after a meal, use them as a means of introduction. We are as addicted to them as we once were to nicotine.
Or so I think.
For people your age, I wonder: is there a place or a circumstance so sacred that smartphones are not invited? Are there times when you were shocked that you saw people using their phones?
Funerals and Churches mainly. I use my phone a lot because I pride myself in responding quickly. I try and be sensible with phone usage during class time, but if it is something important, I will pick up my phone and respond. On the topic of the bill Trump signed, it is completely ridiculous this passed. This is like the Post Office opening up your mail, reading it all, and selling your information to people. It is an invasion of privacy. Some say this is just like Google selling your data, except the only “data” they “sell” is what you using what you google to give you more relevant ads! This allows providers to use whatever they want, and you can opt out of using Google’s services if you disagree with their policies, but you cannot opt out of the providers without losing internet entirely.
There are appropriate times for phone usage as well as inappropriate times. I think that in school, the phone should not be used while a teacher is teaching, but, of course, everyone is guilty of that at some point (I know I am). I also think that it is not great to use the phone while out at dinner with loved ones or colleagues or anyone really. Phones have easily become a way for people to get out of talking, and most people’s lives revolves around their phone. That’s fine and all, because, as the times are changing, so are the people, but one must understand the places to use a phone and to not use a phone.
I agree with Brianna that I get shocked when I see people using their phones during church and funerals. I also think that with more data being put out there (Social Media, Phone Applications) the level for privacy when using computers is becoming less and less. Not sure if there’s any way to combat this.
So I want to address a huge misunderstanding that people have when it comes to this bill and the selling of users information. When this data gets sold, there isn’t a name attached to it. I’m sure you all know that annoying popup that greets you when you go to a new site that asks you to allow cookies, this is what gets sold and the identifying factor that goes with it is something called a cookie ID and it looks something like this: nx#2994. It’s a hash number and it’s what used all over the internet as a means of identification and it works perfectly when its confined on someone’s computer, but as soon as that information leaves the host computer those numbers are essentially useless, they mean nothing. Another identifying factor that would be given when information gets sold is an IP address.
Everyone has heard the term “IP address” and many people believe it is this all powerful means of identifying someone, people think that as soon as you have this magic number anything is possible, but this, too, is a misunderstanding. Your personal IP address doesn’t actually do much, that same address can be shared across multiple devices and the information that you can get from it is limited to the state you live in and your internet service provider, but that’s about it.
All this is to say that the example given above of an employer calling out an employee for posting on social media during work hours cannot happen, the information and means of identification are not there. Now it isn’t impossible to find out the identity of someone through the history given with just a hash number but de-anonymization is no small or easy process. There is a Wikipedia article on it, though it’s not as long as I wish it was. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De-anonymization. To sum this up, the aggregate information that gets sold by ISP’s holds almost no meaning as is it nearly impossible to gain someone’s true identity from the information, so rest assured in the fact that your information is still very much private or just as private as it was before the bill.
As far as smartphones go, there are absolutely places where they aren’t welcome but this is relative. A lot of the responses already said places like churches and funerals and though I may be a stark-raving atheist, these are examples I very much understand. But the big place where I don’t find them welcome, but see them all the times are dates and I do mean dates that are romantic in nature. This has always been my rule. If I am out with someone one on one my phone doesn’t leave my pocket unless for an emergency and since I wear a watch, the time is on my wrist.
So yes, there are indeed places where smartphones should be excluded but these places will be different for everyone.
Personally, I believe that the use of smartphones around others is generally rude. Yes, it is understandable if one needs to check the time or even coordinate with others via their handy-dandy smartphone; however, it can be viewed as rude or disrespectful to mindlessly play 8 Ball Pool on your smartphone while in the presence of others. When one is using his/her phone as a form of passing time or entertainment while in social situations, the message being sent to others is that one rather stare at a flashing screen than strengthen relations and communicate with those around them. Although this may not be the true intentions of some, the use of smartphones around others is a widely accepted, yet looked down upon, gesture that today’s society has made habit of.
I agree with the earlier comments that churches, funerals, and dates should be cellphone-free. Also in any professional setting whether it is a meeting, a meal, or just a conversation with a colleague, I think being on a cellphone is rude and inappropriate. Times are changing and more and more things can get done on a smartphone, but people should remember when it is appropriate to use one (myself included).
Personally, I feel that when people get on their phones during meetings, or at the dinner table is very rude. Not only does that make the person trying to have a conversation feel bad, it makes them feel that one doesn’t care about their opinion, and would rather be on their phone because its more entertaining.
Talking about the foreign policy, everyone knew that this day was going to come sooner or later, which the government hacking into everything we know (or maybe the already have *dramatic music cue*). But, I mean the government should realize that this is ones personal privacy and they don’t need to know everything.
Anyplace where your attention needs to be in the present is a place where your phone needs to be left in the car: church, dates, important meetings. It is disrespectful at times to be on your phone because it shows a disinterest in the situation at hand. Of course, phone are practical so people take them everywhere. With a phone in your hand, you have limitless access to information in your hand. But that information is distracting and often leaves are face to face interlocutor feeling disrespected and dissatisfied because your attention was divided. In regards to the privacy issue once again, I believe that only a guilty man worries about his privacy. It is common knowledge at this point that our internet behavior is monitored, so only the guilty or the ignorant would be alarmed by this bill.
Privacy needs to be respected, and people should not be allowed to sell or use other people’s browsing history. If the government allows people to use others browsing history that it will eventually lead to the citizens distrusting the government.
I personally feel like smartphones should not be used during funerals or a lecture. Funerals happen to honor someone that passed away, and should not be a place where people snapchat or text through the entire event. Another place where I feel phones should not be used are in lectures. People host lectures to inform and educate others, and at that time people should be listening to them and not waste time on their phones. However, phones are necessary because they install a sense of security in a person. For example, if someone is walking down a street and they do not feel safe they can have 911 ready to call instead of having a tragic event happening to them.
I’ve never had the expectations that anything I did on the internet was private. I see the ads pop up tailored to my previous searches and I knew that there was nothing I could do to prevent it. Selling my data to companies I believe is not an infringement on anything if you had no expectations to begin with. There is no harm to me personally, in actuality, why be angry?
As for smartphones, I think that is a concerningly correct analogy to cigarettes (which you seem spiteful about Dr. Easterling). They are a way to stay connected and I think it’s wonderful for me to be able to stay instantly connected to family and friends hours away. I do think there are times that they should be put away, like in social situations to connect to others personally instead of over the phone. They help people cope with anxiety, awkwardness, but it’s sad to see it take priority over personal contact.
Our society is always rapidly changing and with that came the invention of the smart phone. My want for the newest and best smart phone out there has cost my parents more than a dime and I know that every other person out there is thinking the same thing. Our high dollar smart phones are now controlling our lives. We can find dates and meet people online; we can watch movies and tv shows; we can say we have had our share of church for the day by watching a sermon and reading from our bible app. There are endless possibilities of what we can do on our smart phones that we tend to take for granted. Because of these endless possibilities, human interaction has gone down. Instead of listening in class, we scroll through Instagram. Instead of going on a romantic date, we chat on Tinder. We have our gross fingerprinted, bacteria infected, dirty smartphones with us as all times. I am never shocked to see people using their phone because all of our sacred places have been invaded by phones and technology. I try my best to put my phone away when I know it is time to listen, pay attention, and even converse, but we all need to work on figuring out when it is alright to be on our smartphones and when it is not. O.K. rant over. 🙂
I think it is wrong to sell users’ data to advertisers. There are “cookies” that track what you do on the internet for ads already, but it is usually done on a site-by-site bases. You can also turn these “cookies” off for some websites, use an internet security program to tell you not to go to some sites that might have them, or just choose to not use that website entirely. However, the bill is not referring to websites, it is referring to Internet Service Providers. They would be allowed to spy on you without you knowing or being able to do much about it. Most of the time, you are under a contract, and the option for ISPs is much more limited than the number of websites available to you. To make matters worse, this bill could allow the ISPs to make money by on spying on you. Collecting information by invading and spying on what you do, and then turning around and SELLING that information to other companies is wrong.
Cellphones are like a drug. Many people cannot go without looking at their phone for more than a few minutes; however, cellphones can also be vitally important. They can be used for communication, research, photography, shopping, banking, paying bills, and managing a business, and all very easily while on the go. To me, respect is important. Therefore, I believe when you are in a serious conversation, or at a place like a funeral, you should not be on your phone unless it is an emergency or pertains to what is going on. When the setting is laxer, being on your phone is more acceptable.
There has only been one time when I have entered a facility that has blatantly stated “no phones” and enforced it. Now that I think of it, even airplanes allow cell phone use nowadays, and on some flights, it is encouraged. A big problem with the cyber industry can be summed in the question, “how can I make a buck?” I believe that’s why they allow cell phones to be used in-flight. Clearly that’s why personal data can be sold to other companies. It’s all about making money at the expense of our privacy and personal information.
In recent times I have come to accept the fact that the American people are not going to go freely about their lives without “spying” by the federal government and others. It has come to the attention of many American residents that the NSA is supposedly keeping a close tabs on our people, and generally that is supported with the phrase “If you aren’t doing anything wrong then you have nothing to hide.” While I do agree that the idea behind utilizing technology watching for security reason and the safety of our country, this particular move to allow ISP’s to sell search information seems a bit much. With this in effect, I only ask that everyone in the federal government themselves be open to freeing and/or selling their personal search information as well. What’s fair is fair, and if “normal” citizens do not have the luxury of this privacy, than the particular policy makers (with money in mind) should not be treated any differently.
On the word of cellphones, yes it is quite common for people to bring their phones with them everywhere. I am no stranger to this practice, and I will be quick to admit that I personally feel very anxious when I am without my phone. Not only is it useful for escaping uncomfortable situations, but it also gives younger people or those who are alone a means of contact if they get in trouble. With all these points, I think there are times and places for phones, and formal gatherings such as a funeral, special ceremony, or simply when being addressed by someone you are not particularly familiar with are not these places.
I have no expectation of privacy. The era in which we live is based around the commodification of information, and has been so for some time. With this increasing commercialization comes definite detriments, like a lack of security and privacy, but it has obvious benefits we’re all familiar with. And, as Deven pointed out previously, the actual depth and severity of privacy infringement is somewhat dramatized. Far more significant to me in this issue are the numbers pushed by the media about the sums representatives received from ISPs for the passage of this bill (side note: a blog post concerning Citizens United v. FEC or money in politics in general might be interesting).
On a most basic level, the use of phones shows your priorities. If someone uses their phone more than cursorily in any given situation, it indicates that they are placing whatever service they may be using on their phone above their present environment. That’s why using your phone on such occasions as a funeral, date, or period of worship is so bothering; because you’re removing yourself from what is supposed to be an intimate experience.
Most people should already know that you can’t get rid of anything on the internet and it’s not private. I don’t think that selling my internet history to companies is necessarily bad because all it does is make my advertisements more relevant to my searches. Smartphones on the other hand I feel are the newest drug/distraction. People act like they can’t go one day without a phone or it will kill them. I think smartphones themselves should be allowed everywhere in case of emergencies, but the use of them should be restricted in certain areas. Smartphones are a used as a way for people to get out of social situations or ignore their surroundings. I find it especially rude when people text in restaurants or consistently in class. If you really need to reply to a text it’s understandable, but a student (especially an MSMS student) should be able to give one hour a day to their teacher. There are many other places mentioned other comments where smartphones should not be used, but still are. If people choose to use their smartphone at certain times and disrespect others, it just reflects their mannerless personality.
In my opinion it’s rude to be on your phone during certain times such as during church, on a date (restaurants, movie theaters, etc.), and funerals/weddings. Taking pictures during these times counts as phone use. Nonetheless, I also feel that continuous phone use is normalized to a certain extent. I agree that it is an addiction, but since coming to MSMS I’ve used my phone much less. I use it most to cover boredom or awkward situations. Because of this I think people just lack interesting things to do. I feel a certain amount of anxiety when I physically can not have my phone, such as in testing situations, because I have been attached to it since the age of 8. It seems like more of an accessory to me at this point, though.
I read about a conspiracy with the government once when I was younger, and it ruined my idea of privacy. I honestly can see the government tapping phones or receiving all of our search history at the click of a button. It would honestly shock me if someone used their phone in an interview or at their job. I just imagine a firefighter trying to put out a fire while texting his mom. However, we all use our phones constantly, and it is only going to get worse.
During church services, it disgusts me to see people on their smartphones. I remember one time, a group of seventh grade kids had almost finished confirmation and were going through the final ceremony to become an official member of the church. There were about six of them sitting at the altar playing on their phones as the pastor was speaking about the process of confirmation. My parents were the first to see this and were horrified.
For the new bill, it seems very unconstitutional. Private information should remain private of unless the owner of said information gives it up consensually or with a warrant. Since most Americans most likely will not reveal their private information, the government by the laws governed by the Fourth Amendment should have to form the proper basis of obtaining a warrant. Even with the warrant, the government should not be allowed to just sell our information. That knowledge could be possibly abused by its buyers and be used for the wrong purposes, such as blackmail. This bill is a clear violation of our rights of privacy and deserves the backlash that it has received.
Phones have become almost like a drug as you have said, but that should be expected due to the massive growth in technology that this generation is experiencing. While it is annoying to see people always on their smart devices (church, the movies, and even the bathroom), the responsibility of teaching the next generation on how to use technology respectfully should be given to the parents. If parents would teach their kids when and where to use their phones, then many of our annoyances should be easily solved.
The breach of privacy is never something to smile about, but it’s nothing new to be honest. You’re right about the cell phone thing, though. They are omnipresent, and one of the places, the few places, where I still never see smartphones, is in movie theaters. Only once can I think of a time where a movie was disturbed by a ringing cellphone, and I was much younger. Beyond that, I see them at the store, in class, in the library, and at dinner. Even large social gatherings usually feature them prominently, with everyone putting parties up on snapchat and instagram. Not that it’s an actual problem, which is where I think a lot of people make the mistake. Just because people are on their phones everywhere (as long as it’s not behind the wheel), doesn’t mean suddenly that everything is going in the toilet. It just means that society is changing. Before the phone it was the TV, before that the radio, then the newspaper. Everyone has always been surprised at the advancement of technology, regardless of actual danger to society.
I sincerely hope we find out cell phones cause cancer, much like cigarettes. I hope there are active campaigns against them in the future. They’re great, don’t get me wrong. But we’re needlessly dependent on them.
Phones are should not be present at religious ceremonies, at any awards or honor ceremonies, during time you’ve devoted to people in the flesh (dates, during sex, and even time with friends and family), times of great importance (i.e. your wife is in labour, hold her f’in hand)and times you’re using them as a crutch. It makes me so sad to see a solo person in a crowd sitting on their phone. I generally try to engage with said person.
I often leave my phone in the dorm during the day. Over the summer, I go weeks at a time without touching it. Being connected to the world is a poor substitute for being connected with yourself.
I don’t find it rude when someone is on their phone in any place specifically. You never know what they are doing and/or not doing. I do find it slightly unpleasing for someone to be on their phone in meeting, funerals, interviews, or dates. But even when someone is in church, though it shouldn’t be consistently, there are some excuses where it is okay. I am on my phone a lot because quick response is a pet peeve to me whether I am waiting on the response or sending it. It really just depends on what you are doing on your phone when it comes to being rude or not. Some people even take notes on their phones. But I strongly agree that smartphones are the new addiction. It is something that I have to work on personally.
For the more important moments in life, yes, you should fully be present in the moment and not on your phone. I honestly think that it depends on what you’re actually doing with your phone. If it’s to constantly scroll down Facebook or Snapchat, then yeah, maybe that’s not the best thing for you to do. Phones can be used in good and bad ways.(This is poorly worded.) Most people use their phone for more than social media (or at least I hope so), and it’s pretty easy to get wrapped in it when you’re actually doing “important stuff.” Sometimes (with an emphasis on sometimes) a phone can be a better resource than personal contact/communication. It’s all relative and again everything should be used in moderation and everything doesn’t have to be extremely positive/beneficial for it to be considered okay. Talking is important, but we shouldn’t give away our phones to constantly do it all time. If you want to do that, that’s okay, but don’t impose or shame others because of the feelings and biases you have about it on others.
The government should not promote the exploitation of our privacy, especially on such a “wild, wild, west” platform of the internet. After all, the government is incapable of keeping itself or its domestic private corporations safe from foreign cyber hacks. I disapprove of the passage of this bill because it is literally an example of the government selling its citizens out. Funerals are a terrible place to use a phone, especially if the phone rings during the proceedings.
First, I will address the proposed bill. This bill is an absolute atrocity. If this bill is passed, the sliver of privacy that we imagine to still hold will be absolutely shattered, leaving us as open books in the eyes of the government. As our world continues to become more and more technologically dependent, it seems that privacy will continue to disappear. Now, I will address the question on the usage of smartphones. I do agree that smartphones have become the modern drug, essentially infecting every fabric of society and, in my opinion, ruining the experiences of many “sacred” events that I have personally felt. An example of this was in my time in Palestine, where our family was having an incredible family meal with every single family member. Now, this type of meal is impossible, as my family has now been scattered the world as the title of exile has placed great challenges upon each one of us. Anyways, many of the family members, who could barely afford water and food during those hard times, were checking their phones and/or playing with them. This, I felt, was absolutely atrocious, and it showed the ignorance they possessed regarding the sheer importance of this meal. Generally, I believe that there are many locations that smartphones should not be present in: funerals (duh), family meals, the movies, during prayer time at the mosque, etc. Many of these I believe to be extremely obvious, such as funerals and prayer time at the mosque. However, I also believe that family meals are becoming rarer and less special with the arrival of smartphones. Instead of playing on your phone, one should speak with their family and discuss their days, forming a closer and necessary bond with everyone of their family members. Overall, I believe that the proposed bill attempts to unconstitutionally remove the privacy that we as citizens are entitled to, and I believe that the usage of smartphones in both prayer time as well as many other places is absolutely atrocious.
Privacy should be protected and respected, and not sold to third parties.
People take their cell phones everywhere, and some only use theirs when they are necessary and others are nonseparable. Funerals, meetings, and dates and places where they should not be used. Though you never know what someone may be using their phone for, and you should never judge someone without knowing.
It is well known that nothing we do online is private. That doesn’t make it okay, but it definitely should not go unexpected. Further, there are definitely situations that should not involve someone’s smartphone. It definitely doesn’t have to be as big as a funeral or church service, either. It’s important to constantly find time when you’re not worried about checking your phone. It is questionable about how much value you actually find in a conversation if you’d want to be on your phone during it. Further, I feel that the best way to enjoy the outdoors is by staying off your phone. Take your pictures and put it away.
Internet users should know that whatever they do can be accessed by others. However, passing bills that freely allow this isn’t right. It shouldn’t be encouraged. Allowing companies to sell and make money off of your personal internet history is ludicrous.
Phones nowadays allow users to connect with others who aren’t nearby, while simultaneously distracting them from connecting with those in their general vicinity. I dislike when people use their phones at the table during mealtimes, during class, during church services, funerals, birthdays, and other occasions that are meant for people to come together. The usual excuse? Emergencies. What exactly is defined as an emergency nowadays?
In this day and age, communication is key. People make calls to keep in touch with family, use text messages to organize events, and phones are the portal through which we plan our days. It’s no surprise that we carry our phones everywhere, but there are places that unplugging from technology is strongly advised. One such place is church. Adults know how sacred a church is and strongly disapprove of phone usage inside. but young kids nowadays do not see why they can’t use their phones. I have been surprised before when I see little children under the age of 10 carrying smartphones as if they are already grown, especially in church.
I am very disappointed by this bill. The fact that our Congressmen are willing to sell us, the citizens who elected them to represent us, is horrifying, especially considering the relatively low price point. Thad Cochran was paid $123,750 by various ISP companies to support the bill. Roger Wicker received $151,800. Gregg Harper, of the House of Reps, received $33,000. I am blatantly offended that my representatives would sell my privacy, especially for such a low price. If me and my privacy are going to be sold as a product by a company, I expect to receive payment. Either let me opt out from my data and history being sold, or add the revenue from my sales to my ISP bill so I have to pay less. This attack on privacy is ridiculous and I do not stand with it in any way.
The issue of cell phones is another thing. I do believe that a lot of people, especially from MSMS, are smart enough to realize that some places are better experienced without a cell-phone blocking their face. However, I am slightly nervous about our next generations. Kids as young as 4 and 5 now have iPads and unrestricted access to the Internet, which can be as detrimental as it can be helpful. I don’t know a solution because I am such an advocate for Internet freedom and all, but I do think that it is the parents’ duty to monitor what their child is doing at such a young age.
The internet and smartphones are some of the greatest things in this day and age. I do agree that we are addicted to it, but I also know that I personally could go a little while without my phone. I do not think it is right for our privacy to be invaded. These are our personal devices that we pay money to use.
Funerals are sacred occasions that phones should not be at. The worst thing to happen at a funeral is to hear someone’s phone go off. I see it as inconsiderate and rude if you can’t take the time to either leave your phone in the car or at home, or just turn it off.
As mentioned, phones should not be used at the dinner table. My mom will not me near the dinner table if I have my phone. The dinner table is a place where family members talk about their day, not where you sit in silence. My parents, surprisingly, ask me about my day when I come home. We are a close-knit unit; it’s just my mom, dad, sister, and I. We end up laughing over the dumbest things; moments like these are the ones the people should cherish (cheesy, but true). So, the dinner table is definitely a place to not use your phone.
At every wedding that I have went to, people are always glued to their phones. Then again, I have only went to Indian weddings, which last days. However, people should still give respect and not use their phones during important events like these.
In December, my phone broke, and it was wonderful. Of course, it was a pain to borrow someone’s phone to call my mom, but besides that it was great
Without my phone, I had far more time on my hands. It’s amazing how many hours someone can spend on that thing.
I believe that the elimination of smart phones would create a more well-rounded generation, but I still listen to cassettes, so what do I know.
With respect to cyber security, I believe that one’s internet history should remain private in general circumstances.
I believe that it is reasonable to be held accountable to some degree for the things that you post or search online. For example, in the situation you described, since you are posting on a public forum for anyone to see, it should be taken into account that employers may find your posts. Or, if you are under investigation for a crime, it is reasonable for your internet search history to be reviewed to check for possibly incriminating searches or webpages. I do not believe that we are “addicted” to smartphones nowadays any more than we were “addicted” to all the different aspects of our society that smartphones have condensed into one convenient device. Instead of spending our time sending and receiving letters, talking on the telephone, reading the newspaper, playing board games or card games, and a multitude of other things, we can instead save our time and money by going through smartphones to do all of these things.
I never really taught about privacy as a sure fire thing. I always expected to have someone watching over my shoulder when I’m on the internet. Information about me being sold isn’t new that was happening when ever I put my email done for a subscription and to be honest I’m desensitize to most advertisements anyway so it doesn’t bother me. I guess the only time I hate seeing a smartphone is on and ad because that means soon I won’t be able to use mine comfortably. I try to not use my phone in places where my attention should be on one person but I can’t stop; I literally can’t concentrate unless I have my phone on me. Thus the guilty can’t judge the guilty.
I do not agree with the idea that the privacy of an individual can be invaded without just cause. We are not in a time where it would be justifiable–say a world crisis on the scale of World War III. I believe that the privacy of a person is not in the hands of the government, specifically because the realm of internet use is dominated by the private sector. If we are to have a capitalist world like we believe we do, then the private sector must retain some of its liberties–one specifically being that to privacy. I believe that the private sector understands this, in the way that they protect the rights of the individual’s privacy (to an extent), because they know that this is what the individual wants. For the last part of the question, I am often appealed when I see images of individuals falling over their feet while staring at their phones and driving with them.