The next segment was on technology allowing parents to track their children. You can keep track of where your kids are and what they’re doing every second of the day. Having just recently read A Reader’s Guide to the Underground Press #17, with all its zinester articles in the wake of 9-11, i was all “Yeah, you think it’s so great when you can keep track of and thereby protect your kids, and who cares about their privacy because they’re just kids and don’t really have rights, but this means the government has that technology and can track you wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, and that doesn’t sound so good now does it?” The technology included cameras “originally intended for law enforcement and the military.” Parents put them in the yard, in kids’ rooms, and can watch from anywhere in the world thanks to the wonder of online. There is technology so parents can track when the kid is online, who the kid talks to on IM, etc. That was actually what seemed most scary invasion of privacy to me. Especially because this one family got it and used it on their 15-year-old daughter and didn’t tell her at first. Then there’s a black box like thing that can be put in a car. It even beeps when you drive unsafely (speed, brake too sharply, take turns too tightly, etc.). There are also Global Positioning System (GPS) chips which can be put in wristwatches. One of the FOX women asked an independent consultant who is not all about this new technology, “What if a lot of kids starting wearing wristwatches with GPS chips in them? Don’t you think that’s a good thing?” The independent consultant woman pointed out that what’s to stop a kidnapper from taking off the kid’s wristwatches. That’s a good point, but my first thought was actually that kidnappers are gonna learn what those wristwatches look like, and just target kids who aren’t wearing them. There were also rumors of GPS chips which could be implanted in children’s bodies. No one on the show made the leap to chips in everyone, so the government can monitor everyone, all the time. I definitely understand the child protection aspect of all this, which is what makes it such a difficult topic, but it’s just so creepy, and there are so many bad things about it, plenty more than what i mentioned. The host (Shepard Smith) said, afer that segment, “Civil libertarians, eat your hearts out. Kids’ safety comes first.” Good to know they’re not pretending to be balanced or objective in their coverage of this issue.
After the show was over i saw an ad for a Fox show John Doe which actually looks interesting. Premieres September 20, right after Firefly. I have this sick feeling that TV is going to eat my brain next semester. I am not getting a TV in my room, i am not getting a TV in my room.
I have a Forbes library card. This makes me part of the C/W MARS (Central/Western Massachusetts Automated Resource Sharing) network. I am also a part of the Minuteman Library Network. For a while now i have been thinking that if one combined the two networks, one would have most of the state of Massachusetts covered. So tonight i found and printed out a PDF map of all the cities and towns in Massachusetts. I colored all the MLN towns blue, CMARS yellow, and WMARS red. I also included the Old Colony Network, in green, because a number of the towns right next to mine are on that network. I learned that MLN is a fairly small network, despite its 35 or so member libraries (including various academic libraries), when compared to the entire state, though because it has some really large libraries like CPL, one really doesn’t notice much of a lack in the catalog. What really surprised me was how few libraries are in the C/W MARS network. I had expected a swath across the whole state, but it’s really not like that at all. I wonder if part of it is that some of the towns are too small to have a public library.
Because of this post i am tempted to do the same with my LJ friends. Because i don’t have enough useless projects, right? It would have to be just all my friends, though, because a lot of my friends aren’t on LJ.
It was only in reading this post that it occurred to me that the fictional Lake Wobegon is like Woe Be Gone. I think this is the first time i noticed that. Yes, color me slow.
Quote found on LJ:
"We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same."
The picture at the top of thebratqueen’s journal.... That’s quality.