1. Don’t think I agree that privacy is a new concept. I think is depends of the particular situation.

    Take personal income. That is something that has become less private. The reason we have only had income taxes for up to 150 years or so (depending on the country), is the there was huge social resistance to the state knowing that fact. That was much more private information 200 years ago. That is why that state then relied of consumption, luxury and land taxes.

  2. Nice overview of the evolution of the idea Kate. It did make me wonder how the idea of privacy was/is impacted by the notion/practice of gathering information for the purposes of using it against a subject.

    I’m guessing those two are related and potentially evolved hand in hand.

  3. One difference is the global permanent aspect of the web – the ‘what goes on line stays online’ scenario. What is talked around a dinner table and latter gossiped around the village is more likely to be forgotten because it hasn’t been written down or recorded, compared with comments and photos posted online. Those comments online will more likely reach a larger network as well. So you could argue that the web is less private in that respect.
    But again it is down to the individual and the rules are the same off- and online. If you don’t want people to know, don’t tell them – whether at dinner or on facebook.

  4. Brenda

    Sanitation is also a new thing — i hope you’re not arguing that because it’s new we can do with out it?

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