Well, it is pretty much a given that much of we do is being monitored. I had two moments over the weekend that got me thinking about this whole surveillance issue. Firstly, I watched Eagle Eye, a movie about a computer program designed by the government to gather and compile information and make decisions on who to watch and what actions to take with that information. It also gives a glimpse of what is possible (maybe a little exaggerated) in this digitally-driven world. The next morning I read about this CIA story in the news, part of which is about domestic surveillance programs. Then, later that morning, I heard on NPR about this technology company, Palantir, in California who is developing capabilities to assist in data mining and finding trends and patterns in that data. Sound familiar?
This area is a controversial. Some people probably feel that the government has no right in people's personal business. Others strongly feel that if the government can gather certain information and subsequently use it to save lives or make its citizens more safe, then they should do so. Whichever side you are on, or if you are in the middle, there is (a least) one massive question: who is going to be keeping tabs on the people gathering the information to ensure they use it for good? Or as the wife in Enemy of the State says, "Who's going to monitor the monitors of the monitors?"