Online Citizen

I have been an online citizen since the days of dial-up bulletin board systems (BBS) circa 1983. I found my way to the internet a few years later. I decided fairly early on that being online was really like being in any other public place, much like going to a park, mall, or theater.

I believe there is a certain amount of privacy surrendered by putting myself in a public place. My appearance and activities in a public place are visible to others that may be present. I do not believe that appearing in a public place grants permission for people to inspect every aspect of my life.

I have become increasingly dismayed about the amount of surveillance that is done on the internet by both private and government organizations. I am quite comfortable with the idea that what I post on my public blog, Facebook, and Twitter are entirely in the public eye. I am not comfortable with my every communication and activity being inspected by organizations or persons that are not directly involved.

Net neutrality is also an issue that has concerned me for quite sometime. I believe that the internet should show no preference to traffic. Data packets are data packets. They should not be judged by who sent them or where they are going. The companies that route the traffic through the internet should not be able to give special treatment to certain types of traffic.

Given the current political climate in the United States and the growth of efforts to overturn net neutrality, I decided it is time to start being more cognizant of my online security. Over the last couple of months, I have started to take some steps to better secure my online presence and communications. I am certain that my efforts are not perfect, but I plan to share my experiences so that others may benefit.