View previous topic | View next topic

Over-surveillance

Page 1 of 4
Goto page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next

bobwilson
409738.  Thu Sep 18, 2008 6:17 pm Reply with quote

Quote:
Just a bit of friendly advice, (edited), as you've similarly outed yourself - it's best to be careful what you say. Technically, anyone could be reading. Maybe it's a little cautious of me, but weirder things have happened.


I noticed this post in one of the threads and it bothers me.

The poster has made some comments on this forum none of which (AFAIK) could be considered offensive but which could be considered by his/her employer to be not in line with the official pronouncements of that employer. (Sorry for the vagueness but it's necessary to protect the innocent).

The warning is directed to another poster who has similarly made comments which could be construed as not in the interests of his/her employer.

Neither poster (again AFAIK) has disclosed any privileged information.

Isn't it a bit sinister when our fear of surveillance is such that we voluntarily censor ourselves because we think it's possible that our employers might get wind of us expressing private opinions?

 
Neotenic
409761.  Thu Sep 18, 2008 7:07 pm Reply with quote

It's pretty pointless to anonymise, really. And maybe a little ironic.

But someone on another thread recently said

Quote:
this is how misquotes get started.


Private opinions they may be, but this is a public forum.

It may seem over-cautious, but I don't particularly want to get turned into a 'spokesperson' by some unscrupulous lazy hack in desperate need of fresh copy.

No priveliged info has indeed been shared, and I just think it's best to make sure it stays that way, especially while the rumour mill is spinning quite as wildly as it is at the moment.

I wouldn't necessarily call it self-censorship to try and avoid a Career Limiting Moment, if possible - that's closer to self-preservation to me.

 
smokie
409763.  Thu Sep 18, 2008 7:21 pm Reply with quote

Well, I picked up a snippet of information from one post that I thought I'd tuck away in the back of my mind in case it ever became share price sensitive so perhaps the friendly word of caution was justified.
(not on the relevant thread, don't panic)

 
bobwilson
409764.  Thu Sep 18, 2008 7:33 pm Reply with quote

Just to clarify (since I think neo has given permission for his part in our downfall to be known):

The quote I posted came from neo - the quote he posted came from me.

Now - to neo's post.

Hacks are, as you say, lazy. They are also mindful of libel laws. It is inconceivable that a hack would use the unidentified musings on an internet thread as the basis for a story that suggested that these musings formed the basis of official policy.

I'd have thought you'd have known this given your job (not in this area of regulation but the principles are much the same across the spectrum). However, we've clashed before on what I expected you to know so my mistake.

The only reason for self-censorship would be a worry that one's employer might be a bit miffed at the opinions expressed. The warning to another that he/she might want to limit their exposure suggests a posture that indicates that there is a climate of fear in speaking your mind in private. That worries me.

You describe it as a "career limiting moment". I prefer to think of it as intrusive surveillane by interfering busy bodies. Whether it occurs isn't the issue. You clearly believe it may occur and are warning of it.

It isn't necessary for the state to watch us - it's only necessary for us to believe the state may be watching us.

 
samivel
409774.  Thu Sep 18, 2008 8:04 pm Reply with quote

bobwilson wrote:
The warning to another that he/she might want to limit their exposure suggests a posture that indicates that there is a climate of fear in speaking your mind in private.


Posting opinions on a public forum like this is not the same as 'speaking your mind in private'.

 
bobwilson
409777.  Thu Sep 18, 2008 8:24 pm Reply with quote

samivel wrote:
bobwilson wrote:
The warning to another that he/she might want to limit their exposure suggests a posture that indicates that there is a climate of fear in speaking your mind in private.


Posting opinions on a public forum like this is not the same as 'speaking your mind in private'.


Actually, yes it is. Unless you subscribe to the view that speaking to a single person in confidence (and never knowing if that person is a stasi agent) is different to saying what you think as a private individual to two people? Or three people? Or - well where exactly do you draw the line?

If you speak as a private individual - whether to one, two or 20 million people - that is exactly the same as sharing a confidence with a friend in matters that have two states - those that legitimately concern your employer and those that don't.

As an example - if I were to go on public television and declare that I was homosexual to an audience of 20 million people - in what way is that different (to my employer) to making the same statement to a close friend?

neo made it quite clear that he was speaking in a personal capacity - that has no bearing on his work and is no business of his employers. The fact that he is concerned that his employer may hear of his personal views indicates that his employer is some kind of fascist control freak. And that, in turn, is worrying.

 
jakamneziak
409791.  Fri Sep 19, 2008 2:13 am Reply with quote

speaking of worrying. The uk has the highest person to camera ratio than anywhere else worldwide. I believe the rate stands at 9 people per camera in britain. And we wonder why we invented the scurge of television, big brother.

 
Alfred E Neuman
409793.  Fri Sep 19, 2008 2:25 am Reply with quote

I'd write a strongly worded letter about that - why should anyone have to share a camera with 8 other people? Stand up for you rights, and demand your own!!!

 
Neotenic
409806.  Fri Sep 19, 2008 3:08 am Reply with quote

Quote:
And we wonder why we invented the scurge of television, big brother.


<klaxon>

Endemol is a Dutch TV company.

The first series of Big Brother was shown in Holland in 1999. The UK'as version followed the year after.

Quote:
neo made it quite clear that he was speaking in a personal capacity - that has no bearing on his work and is no business of his employers. The fact that he is concerned that his employer may hear of his personal views indicates that his employer is some kind of fascist control freak. And that, in turn, is worrying.


There is something of a logical fallacy around the word 'indicates', there.

And I would also mention that there is precedent for a certain amount of caution from these very boards - we have, under circumstances that are immaterial to this discussion, had a member's posts completely expunged from the record after comments made here had a negative impact on them in the 'real world'.

As I say, I don't think it is certain that my comments could be viewed and interpreted by hostile parties, but I think it is prudent to mitigate against these types of risks. Cautious, maybe, but considering just how fond I am of my career, that to me seems sensible.

And if you don't think 'internet rumours' make there way into the press at large, I suggest you go back and have a look at how the fact that Sarah Palin's daughter was pregnant was forced into the media spotlight. A number of hacks also have something of a lassez-faire attitude to libel laws.

But either way, it is a personal decision on how I choose to conduct myself - and it is absurd to extemporise around that to build up any sinister implications.

 
simonp
409823.  Fri Sep 19, 2008 3:36 am Reply with quote

Anything i write here is recorded. things i say to my friends are generally blown away on the wind.

 
dr.bob
409874.  Fri Sep 19, 2008 5:36 am Reply with quote

Well put.

I find it surprising that bobwilson can see no difference between saying something in private to one or two people, and posting something in a lasting medium that's accessible worldwide to anyone with an internet connection.

Yes, they might both be private sentiments, but there's still a world of difference between them.

 
Neotenic
409886.  Fri Sep 19, 2008 6:10 am Reply with quote

I get the sneaking suspicion here that, in regard to the comments this thread is based on, the 'who' is possibly more important than the 'what'.

 
Arcane
409913.  Fri Sep 19, 2008 6:36 am Reply with quote

This IS a public forum. What you see will be viewed by just more than those who are members. Visitors and yes, potential employers or current employers could.

My advice: Don't say anything in a relatively permanent medium that you wouldn't want anyone to use against you.

I'm a stay at home mum, therefore around here, I'M the boss.

Ha.

 
barbados
409914.  Fri Sep 19, 2008 6:37 am Reply with quote

I have the feeling the confusion lies somewhere between private and anonymous

 
Arcane
409970.  Fri Sep 19, 2008 7:35 am Reply with quote

I don't know much about computer techie stuff (that's the official name) but how easy would it be for a potential or current employer to view this forum and find out an email address (not including members who have included an email address in their profile?)

 

Page 1 of 4
Goto page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next

All times are GMT - 5 Hours


Display posts from previous:   

Search Search Forums

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group