re: privacy

J de Lyser (
Mon, 9 Dec 1996 23:25:35 +0100

at Sun, 8 Dec 1996 13:46:49 -0800 (PST), (Twirlip
of Greymist) wrote:

someone wrote:
>} >My basic point here is to question the rationality of anyone valuing

i wrote:
>} IMO, privacy serves the individuality of people. Your idea is very noble,
>} Being able to selectively choose,
>} is also part of what makes us an individual...

Twirlip of Greymist wrote:
>Ah! Thank you! I thought it quite likely that there would be some good
>analogy between physical integrity and privacy -- intellectual integrity
>- -- but I couldn't quite pin it down. Yes, overall productivity could go
>up if all ideas were globally shared. If it was accomplished through
>some 'telepathic' way, we would become a group mind, possibly with
>little nodes of ourselves still left, possibly not. I don't want that.
>Why? Because I'm selfish. Why? Because being selfish maintains
>myself. Why do I want that? Because I'm selfish. A universal property
>of all life. Amoeba are selfish in working to maintain a chemistry
>distinct from their environment; a global group mind would also be
>selfish, at least if it wanted to stay a coherent mind. But I was here
>first. No group mind.

As it should be your right to choose if you want to be selfish, and to what
extent, just like to what extent you should wish not to be. ;-)
I can however see the benefits of a group, and to a certain degree of a
group mind (allowing privacy). If you wish to share the benefits of such a
group, some privacy or at least some selfishness will have to be given up
(be it maybe for other 'selfish' reasons). Just like those groups have the
right to decide to what minimum level, the individual should have the right
to choose between those groups, or not to choose for a group at all. Today
we have groups (states) where this is not the case. hmmm.... wrote

>>IMO, privacy serves the individuality of people. Your idea is very noble,
>>but the reality is that your 'altruism' may not be the same as someone elses

>I see no reason to accuse him of altruism here, he is
>saying he values rationality. I thinks honesty, self
>esteem and character are often confused with " altruism",
>becuase these virtues are actually "helpful" in the real sense of the word.
>Unlike Altruism, they do not depend on anyone else to self sustain.
>And altruism often tries to be helpful, yet fails miserably.

I'm sorry for using the term 'altuism', English is not my native language,
and i couldn't come up with anything which would describe what i intended.
(which btw is why i ''d it) Although i agree that altruism isn't the correct
word, i think 'rationality' also doesn't quite coin it. Honesty might serve
best to replace it, as one individuals honesty or thurth is not by
definition the same as anothers.

>I see your basic point - So, if one is "rational" , above boards , and needs
>less privacy because of it, and that ius abused by a party, then privacy or
>*protection* from an irrational influence may be in order.
>***Protection from invasive scrutiny or unhealthy interference should be the
>order of the day*** This is being confused with privacy IMHO.

So what do you suggest we use for this **protection** ? Mind you that one
person may 'feel' a random action by another individual, based on
information he got from the first person, as either 'invasive scrutiny' or
'unhealthy interference', whereas the second individal will not view it this
way. My point was that the writer assumed a situation completely without
'ethical' judgement (or maybe his own).

Joost de Lyser