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Database Nation: The Death of Privacy in the 21st Century
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Database Nation: The Death of Privacy in the 21st Century

3.64 of 5 stars 3.64  ·  rating details  ·  94 ratings  ·  7 reviews
Fifty years ago, in 1984, George Orwell imagined a future in which privacy was demolished by a totalitarian state that used spies, video surveillance, historical revisionism, and control over the media to maintain its power. Those who worry about personal privacy and identity--especially in this day of technologies that encroach upon these rights--still use Orwell's "Big B ...more
Paperback, 338 pages
Published December 11th 2000 by O'Reilly Media (first published 2000)
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Stephanie Sun
Very appropriate to read this on my evil data-collecting devices (although I bought this title direct from O'Reilly and then accidentally deleted the cloud copy 50% of the way through, so I'm not sure that my highlights got stored) and then, upon finishing, enter still more data into yet another database (THIS ONE—I sometimes forget this is a database, and now Mr. Garfinkel's made-up story about an online friend who turned out to be a robot makes me question who among my Goodreads network are ro ...more
Imagine my surprise when I discovered much of a section of chapter 10 titled “Eliza and her Children” (pgs. 243-247 in 2001 paperback edition) is an excerpt of my 1996 article “Invasion of the Internet Impostors” published in Volume 8 of Internet Underground magazine. Garfinkel does cite my article in footnote 5 in reference to Zumabot, but excerpts (admittedly somewhat reworded) on the subject of ELIZA, Hugh Loebner, MGonz*, and MUDs are presented without crediting me.

Five years later (2006) I
Steven Tomcavage
An interesting overview of what data is collected about you and how it is used. The book is a bit dated in sections, it was written pre-9/11 so the chapter on Terrorism is of course way out of date. But, the chapter on Terrorism is also eerily prescient. The most fascinating chapters were the ones on video surveillance and shopping loyalty programs. There are parts of the book that mention data collection on the Internet, and as this book is pre-Google and pre-Cloud, there are some obvious holes ...more
Solid book (of course, it's by Garfinkel), pointing out the issues and concerns around data collection, erosion of privacy, and inadequacy of current privacy laws to control collection.
José Luis
I read this book some time ago. It was a first account that parts of our lives are entirely available on the web, where our footprints can be easily chased and information can be extracted. It was the first whistleblower I read about the end of anonimity, and maybe privacy too in the future (although this is somewhat under our control).
Don-E Merson
This was written before 9/11 and second HIPPA standard so it was outdated.
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