Waitt on Wednesday The Pub


I’m wondering about all of this trouble that Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg is getting into with the government. What’s the real reason the government is making him look like the latest incarnation of Satan?

Did the government just now realize that Internet pros were using Facebook to mine data on people and then using that data to market to those people? To sell Bobby in Minneapolis and Betty in Atlanta everything from political candidates to clever t-shirts to hard-on pills? Really? They just now figured that out?

Smart adult club owners look at wedding announcements in the local newspaper and then send an invitation to the groom encouraging him to have his bachelor party at their club. Smart adult club owners send entertainers with free-entry passes for their club to sporting events because of the target audience at those events. Every business owners uses whatever data is publicly available to find potential customers and to market to them.

But now Facebook is evil?

In past years the government tried restricting the Internet by floating out the idea that it was a haven for child porn and so needed to be regulated by the government. That idea never really took off, so perhaps the newest strategy is to suggest that the Internet is spying on you and is no longer safe. And to make everyone take this threat seriously let’s have some congressional hearings and call some people to the carpet.

Our government—every government, actually—wants to eventually regulate the Internet. The thought of so many common, normal people having a worldwide platform to immediately communicate with each other scares the ever-living shit out of every elected official and military leader.

As it should.

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