What's Public? What's Private?

Chapter 24

2009 Internet Privacy - Are YOU in control?

Point/Counterpoint Articles: They Know What You're Buying

"Internet Target Marketing Threatens Consumer Privacy" by Russ Cobb


"Paranoid Privacy Hawks Don't Realize How Good They've Got It" by Roahn Wynar


In what ways are companies helping the consumer by tracking their personal information for marketing purposes? In what ways does this harm consumers?


Is it ethically acceptable that marketers know personal information about various consumers without their consent? Is it legally acceptable?


How does target marketing affect the freedom to openly explore the internet?


How does "target marketing" help companies be efficient and effective in their marketing tactics?


What could be done to satisfy both the companies and the consumers?

"Stripped of More than My Clothes" by Daria MonDesire

The author associates her strip-search experience to a traumatic rape experience she had. Do you think that strip searching is trespassing privacy boundaries? If so, are there any other methods to protect citizens of terrorist threats?


Should airline passengers have the right to refuse strip-searching even if this is a necessary action to be taken for public safety?


Only 4% of people strip-searched have been found carrying drugs. However, the people targeted at airports to be strip-searched are the minority races. Should everyone have to be strip-searched in order for this method to be successful or just those who look suspicious?


Should U.S Customs Officers have the authority to strip-search based simply on suspicion?


Does the fact that security has tightened to this extreme affect your desire to travel using airports?



"Rower with Muslim Name Is an All-American Suspect" by Ira Berkow

To what extent does racial profiling shape American society?


How did the terrorist attack on 9/11 affect United States protection policies? Is this reasonable?


Was it justifiable for Abdullah (the Muslim rower) to be checked before each of his flights?


Would Abdullah have faced a similar situation prior to 9/11?


Do Muslims in America have to give up more personal rights compared to other prominent ethnicities?

"Why Fear National ID Cards?" by Alan Dershowitz

In what ways does society already have systems similar to a national ID card?


How would a national ID card prevent terrorism?


Would this lead to a tyrannical government and limit personal rights? Will the U.S government be seen as "Big Brother"?


How would national ID cards affect illegal immigrants and their lives in America?


Would you be willing to give up your private information for the safety of the public? How necessary/unnecessary is this?

"Tap on Merkel Provides Peek at Vast Spy Net" by NY Times

How necessary (or ethical) is it to spy on allied nations?



Should America's preservation of personal rights stop at the border of the country or should the government respect other nations' privacy? If America stopped spying on other nations, should America be worried about the actions of other world leaders?



What effects does the discovery of NSA (national security agency) spying on other world leaders have?


If you were a world leader and discovered that your personal and business phone calls were being tracked by the U.S government, how would your view of America change?


Should Americans feel betrayed that the government spies, not only on foreign nations, but also its own citizens emails, phone calls, and purchases?