With all the silly memes that get passed around the Internet, I really wish one would start from my previous post. I know of only two people who were inspired to make a similar pictorial history. Neither could locate a complete set of pictures. But, please don’t let something as trivial as completion hold you back from transparency.
I continually harp on the idea of equiveillance and the previous post is yet another in the line of me trying to walk the walk with a dash of sousveillance. I was lucky in that members of my peer group leave easy to find digital presences. I’m also not so experienced that I have started “forgetting” past experiences.
This was born because someone tried to erase evidence of their conscious and consensual actions.
Trust is built from knowledge of a person’s background. We engage in business transactions, social interactions, and interpersonal relationships on the basis of trust established through third parties and first person experience. But, there are many sensitive and potentially dangerous situations we expose ourselves to in which there is a societal expectation of near total privacy. Often people claim they’re being honest or practicing “responsible disclosure” while simultaneously and conveniently withholding the most relevant information.
With my previous post, I set myself a bar. I could lie and change the post in the future. But, the Wayback Machine or Google Cache could be used to reveal the truth. And, the pressure I feel from the social norms to be discreet does not compare to the pressure for honesty and avoiding revisionist histories. Of course, this presumes my identity is closely related to who I am in reality.
Scott Robinson at LiveJournal, Facebook, last.fm and Kuro5hin may be controlled by the same individual; but, examination of each reveals a different personality. And, what about all those other fragments of identity sitting across the Internet? I, and probably you, have left accounts open on websites played with once and then never seen again. If someone were able to control those accounts, it would be simple identity theft and potential character assassination.
So, I went through my list of websites with recorded passwords and tried closing those ostensibly “one-time” accounts.
Convenient “close account” option available
- Windows Live
Required a support request
- Friendster - I had to e-mail because their “close account” didn’t work.
- All of MP3
- Victoly Scores
- Fandango and TicketMaster
No “close account” information even in their help databases. When I tried to make support requests, they required me to make another account!?
- Slashdot - You can’t.
Required a support request. They renamed my account to “firstname.lastname@example.org” and neglected to mention it to me in their response. Great, now I’m a straight-edge shopper of JanSport backpacks.
- Fandango and TicketMaster
And just that easily, I have erased evidence my conscious and consensual actions.