Transparent Society

From: John Calvin (
Date: Sat May 06 2000 - 20:04:00 MDT

A possible scenario in a transparent society.

I currently live on an acre lot, large lawn and about a third of the lot is wooded.

the scenario:

One day I happen to have an argument with my boss (I happen to work in a federal building) We occasionally have differences of opinion the difference is now we live in a "Transparent Society" with ubiquitous surveilance and AI watching it all happen.

On my way home I stop and get fertilizer for my lawn cause its spring and its time to get out in the yard. I also stop and get a couple gallons of gas for my chainsaw because I need to cut up the tree limbs that have fallen due to the winter storms. While I'm at it I get a large rain barrell because I want to save on my water bill and use rainwater (I live near Seattle) to water my gardens.

All in and of themselves innocent things.

However the AI, not yet being able to read my mind alerts the Police who are sent to investigate why I have purchased the makings of a bomb so recently after having had an argument with my boss. The police are also unable to read my mind, but checking past records they would be able to determine that I have been in the military, have once purchased a copy of the Anarchist cookbook, and occasionally veiwed websites on Anarchy. They are unable to determine (No mind reading tech yet) that my actual miotivations for these things were Duty, curiosity, and academic research (in that order). Being an innocent civilian I ought never be subject to this kind of questioning in the first place, yet (In the interest of public safety)I find myself in just such a position. What do the police officers do now, take my word that I intend no harm and hope that I am not deceiving them. Confiscate the "Bomb" making material depriving me of its use for harmless purposes, or maybe they ought to arrest me as a potential threat
to public safety.

I don't have an answer to these questions, they however give me reason to be extremely wary of "Transparent Society"

John Calvin<-- enjoying a rare sunny day in the northwest by staying inside and posting to this list.

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