The End of Privacy?
In this century it appears the loss of anonymity will be more dramatic than the loss of virginity. Two events that resulted in deaths, both involving the Internet at least tangentially, signal the need for a reexamination of privacy.
Is it even possible in a world with surveillance cameras wherever you turn? Drones aren’t only used in Afghanistan.
In the Princeton suicide case of Tyler Clementi, his predator had figured out how to set up a remote control viewing of his having sex with an older gay man. Even though it never happened, and even though no video of the sexual encounter was ever posted, the mere appearance on Websites of the fact it happened led to Clementi jumping off the George Washington Bridge.
This raises another issue. In any sexual harassment case, it is difficult to determine what happened, and why. There will be exaggeration, which could result in a more extreme response than might otherwise have followed. Can a court handle cases like this? Did events in Clementi's prior life contribute to his decision to take his life?
How can there be free speech if your right to swing ends where my iPhone begins.
Must everything be figurative, not literal?
This week a teen in Chardon, Ohio, allegedly killed three high school students after publishing a poem that included references to death on Facebook that could have been a warning of what was to come. The Christian Science Monitor reported that T.J. Lane, the Chardon killer, attended an alternative school for students who are evaluated as a high risk for “substance abuse/chemical dependency, anger issues, mental health issues, truancy, delinquency, difficulties with attention/organization, and academic deficiencies,” according to the school's website. All are red flags that should have made the family weapon more difficult to obtain, says Jennie Lintz, acting executive director of The Center to Prevent Youth Violence in New York City, the Monitor reported.Continued on the next page