Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

Community News Network

December 25, 2013

Americans uneasy about surveillance but often use snooping tools

(Continued)

WASHINGTON —

She is not particularly bothered by the intimate knowledge Wegmans collects about her grocery shopping, because she gains from the exchange — the store offers her discounts. But she finds the storehouse of information that Facebook and Google collect about users to be creepy and intrusive, because she does not see any benefit from giving them her data.

Go ahead, listen to my calls, track my movements, said Terry Brickerd, mother of college and high school students and vice president of the parents association for Broad Run High in Ashburn: "I don't care. I don't have anything to hide. Because they're not listening to us individually — they look for patterns. So what's the big deal? I mean, without that, how many terror attacks would we have?"

Brickerd does not mind when companies track her purchases and online searches, either. "I'm glad American Express tracks me, because twice they've called me when something unusual happened, and that protected me," she said.

The Washington Post poll found Americans almost equally bothered by government surveillance as they are by corporate snooping, with 69 percent concerned about tracking by Internet search and social-media companies and 66 percent worried about what the government does. Overall, more-educated and affluent Americans were less likely to be concerned about surveillance. Political conservatives tended to be more concerned about government surveillance.

The survey did not find significant differences in attitudes toward government surveillance across age groups. Forty-five percent of Americans younger than 30, more than any other age group, said they were "very concerned" about how sites such as Facebook and Twitter use their information.

"What privacy? On the Internet, there is almost no privacy," said Austin McCuiston, 19, a food runner at Ford's Fish Shack in Ashburn, near the epicenter of Loudoun's 4.5 million square feet of data centers. He is very cautious about what he posts on Facebook or other Internet services. "People can take that stuff and really dig into your life."

Text Only
Community News Network
  • The Simpsons still going strong

    The groundbreaking animation first hit the air Dec. 17, 1989, but the family first appeared on television in "The Tracey Ullman Show" short "Good Night" on April 19, 1987.

    August 21, 2014

  • Police chief resigns over racial slur repost to Facebook

    A repost on his personal Facebook page of a racially-charged comment by the original poster of a comedy video has forced the police chief of an Oklahoma city to resign his office.

    August 21, 2014

  • Does Twitter need a censor?

    Twitter decided last year to make images more prominent on its site. Now, the social network is finding itself caught between being an open forum and patrolling for inappropriate content.

    August 21, 2014

  • sleepchart.jpg America’s sleep-deprived cities

    Americans might run on sleep, but those living in the country's largest cities don't appear to run on much.

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Who should pay for your kids ACT?

    Thirteen states paid for 11th-grade students in all public high schools to take the ACT college admission test this year, with several more planning to join them in 2015.

    August 20, 2014

  • Pets.jpg Why do people look like their pets?

    As much as we might quibble over the virtues and vices of Canis domesticus, however, and over whether human nature is any better or worse than dog nature, even dog fanciers don't usually want to look like a dog.

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ice bucket challenge trending up

    Internet trends are a dime a dozen these days. Everything from Tebowing to planking to the cinnamon challenge can cause a wave of social media activity that can last for weeks before fizzling out.

    August 19, 2014

  • Africa goes medieval in its fight against Ebola

    As the Ebola epidemic claims new victims at an ever-increasing rate, African governments in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia have instituted a "cordon sanitaire," deploying troops to forcibly isolate the inhabitants in an area containing most of the cases.

    August 18, 2014

  • Democrat? Republican? There's an app for that

    If you're a Republican, you might want to think twice before buying Lipton Iced Tea, and forget about Starbucks coffee. If you're a Democrat, put down that Reese's Peanut Butter Cup, and throw away the cylinder of Quaker Oats in your pantry.

    August 18, 2014

  • Five myths about presidential vacations

    In the nuclear age, presidents may have only minutes to make a decision that could affect the entire world. They don't so much leave the White House as they take a miniature version of it with them wherever they go.

    August 15, 2014

AP Video
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.