Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

Features

December 29, 2013

Americans uneasy about surveillance but often use snooping tools

(Continued)

WASHINGTON —

Nearly seven in 10 Americans are concerned about how much personal information government agencies and private companies collect, the poll found. But among parents 40 or older — the group most likely to have teenagers — 70 percent said they monitor the websites their children visit. Many also review their kids' texts, emails and social-media use. A small number of Americans also report tracking the movements of their spouses or using video feeds to monitor elderly parents.

Northern Virginia tech entrepreneur Zachary Thompson, 30, is typical in disliking government surveillance but embracing similar tools in his own life. Thompson, who owns an Internet service provider, YellowFiber Networks, has had to respond to federal court orders to hand over user data. "It sucks, to be blunt, because there's nothing you can do," he said.

But when it comes to his daughter — not yet 2 years old — he already plans to track her in a way that parents a generation ago could hardly have imagined. He and others said a parent's relationship with a child is fundamentally different from a government's with its citizens.

"I fully anticipate when she comes of age putting up a fire wall and monitoring everything she does," he said. "That's a parent's responsibility."

In Ashburn, the sprawling Northern Virginia suburb where development was supercharged by Loudoun County's 1990s tech boom, massive data centers — the guts of the Internet — have replaced farms along rolling, formerly rural roads. People in Ashburn have lived and worked with the Internet since it first became widely used, yet even here, in townhouse communities and estate home developments built hard by the data centers, residents wrestle with how to distinguish between useful surveillance and unacceptable intrusions — by the NSA, by private companies and by family members.

Attitudes toward surveillance often vary depending on who is doing it and how clear the purpose is. Beliveau, for example, does not mind the tracking the government does to sniff out potential terrorists, because she believes innocent people have nothing to fear.

Text Only
Features
  • Study: Kids gain weight more quickly over summer break

    Any parent or teacher can tell you that schoolchildren tend to slip back a bit academically over the long summer break. But now a Harvard University study has come up with troubling indications that they also gain weight more quickly during those months when, traditionally, we hope they're outdoors much of the time, enjoying the summer sun.

    June 16, 2014

  • 20140614-AMX-RETIRE-GENX14.jpg Lean retirement looms for Generation X

    When their working years end, Gen-Xers might have to live on just half of their pre-retirement income, compared with 60 percent for the Baby Boom generation, Pew said last year.

    June 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • 20140612-AMX-FATHERS-CARDS123.jpg Father's Day cards make subjects the targets of jokes

    There's a good chance if you receive — or give — a Father's Day card this weekend, Dad will be portrayed as a flatulent, beer-obsessed, tool-challenged buffoon who would rather hog the remote, go fishing or play golf than be with the kids.

    June 15, 2014 3 Photos

  • Texting while driving is latest teen risk as smoking declines

    While smoking among American teens has fallen to a 22-year low, most adolescents admit to engaging in a new type of risky behavior: texting while driving.

    June 15, 2014

  • $15 minimum wage puts Seattle in uncharted waters

    Depending on which pundit is nattering away, this means Seattle is either going to fall off the map and become a "Mad Max"-style economic wasteland or transform into an egalitarian utopia that inspires sweeping pro-labor activism nationwide.

    June 7, 2014

  • 2010-Winter-Olympic-Games-001.jpg Nobody wants to host the Winter Olympics

    If we end up watching slopestyle from the Central Asia steppes in 2022, it will likely be because it's becoming clear that nobody in Europe wants to host these Olympics anymore. Publics may finally be getting wise to the fact that the long-term economic benefits of hosting mega-events like the Olympics or the World Cup are usually negligible at best.

    May 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • airplanes-work-1.jpg Airfare honesty? It may be an oxymoron

    The issue of fare advertising has taken on a renewed sense of urgency now that Congress is considering removing the Transportation Department's full-fare advertising rule, which requires airlines and ticket sellers to display a price that you can actually book.

    May 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Study: Both men and women feel less stress at work than at home

    In a newly released study in the Journal of Science and Medicine, researchers carefully examined the levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, of a variety of workers throughout the day. The data clearly showed that both men and women are significantly less stressed out at work than they are at home.
     And the women they studied said they were happier at work. While the men said they felt happier at home.

    May 27, 2014

  • Five myths about caffeine

    But how much do you know about the drug - and yes, it is a drug - you're consuming? Before downing one more gulp of your favorite stimulant, let go of some persistent, caffeinated myths.

    May 27, 2014

  • Making the most of longer school days

    Research shows that extra time doesn't help unless it is well used. With that in mind, the Boston-based National Center on Time and Learning has just released recommendations on the best way to construct a longer school day.

    May 26, 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.