Be Seeing You. Be Shaming You, Too.

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For all of its Snidley Whiplash swagger, of late, the GOP seems to have forgotten that the internet exists.

More to the point: they haven’t realized that the kinds of bullshit they used to be able to pull in relative secret–during game 7 of the NBA finals, as in Texas; or at 8 o’clock at night on the eve of Independence Day, as in North Carolina this week–will no longer have the comfort of the shadows.

No. Because somebody’s always watching.

And, as Edward Snowden was helpful enough to remind us (in the douchiest possible way), each of us is caught in a very particular kind of governmental gaze. (Ah, bonjour Foucault.)

As a liberal, I know I should be furious about this, about data farms in Utah and metadata and the autonomy that’s been taken from me. I’ll admit: I feel a bit guilty at not going full-on Rage Cat on this issue; my dreams are full of Howard Zinn shaming me from afar.

But I’ve spent a lot of time over the past few years thinking about what it means to have a life online, to be leaving a digital trail all over the freaking place, and I’ve made my peace, mostly, with having little control over data that once was “mine” and that’s now free range on the Internet.

Continue reading “Be Seeing You. Be Shaming You, Too.”