In Apple we trust, the death of the public domain

We trust Apple more than we trust our government. What does that tell us about our priorities, our belief in the public space, our desire for freedom? Instead of fighting in the public domain to control the government through democratic means, we retreat into “privacy” with the false, empty, promise that Apple will protect us. We accept their promise blindly that they alone will protect our privacy with technology. We do not realize that privacy is a political thing and a poor political thing at that without realizing that technology never solves a political problem. We want technology to be the answer, something someone else will provide, because we no longer have the courage to act politically, publicly, to answer the political question.

We willingly put our private information; our money, our records, our contacts into one place, the perfect target, and we belief that technology provided by Apple, a company designed for one purpose and one purpose alone—make money, will protect us. We are no longer content to keep our money separate from our records; our records separate from our contacts. We want them in one place because technology providers, the technological evangelists like Jobs, Shirky, Zuckerberg et al., tell us to do this for convenience, to be cool, to join the revolution. What we should be doing is fighting for legislation that protects our bank accounts, our health records, our contacts. Instead, we are encouraged to retreat to privacy, to surrender the public domain, so that we can be protected by our technological betters like Cook.

We put all our records in one place for Apple, yet if the government had asked or even required us to do that we would be rebelling, fighting, and voting to stop them. What do we do today? We hide behind Apple’s defiant posturing, their skirts, as if they will put our privacy before their profits. As if they are a political actor willing and able to protect our civil liberties? If anything shows the moral and political decay of America it is not Donald Trump it is the false belief in Apple’s political, civic, and moral righteousness as our political defender. We will not vote, we will not organise, we will not attend public meetings, but by God! we will jump when Tim Cook tells us that our privacy, our rights, our ability to pay his salary, is at stake. If we do not follow him, we are told that we will surrender democracy. I tell you this, if we follow him we have surrendered democracy.


About lawrence serewicz

An American living and working in the UK trying to understand the American idea and explain it to others. The views in this blog are my own for better or worse.
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