Bethesda data collection fuckery (split)

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Re: Bethesda data collection fuckery (split)

Postby Gez » Sun Aug 12, 2018 3:53 pm

Reactor wrote:Well, this data collection is pretty much what Orwell envisioned before, except we receive it in small doses.

No, because Orwell didn't foresee the role of computers. He has people getting watched by other people. This goes so far above and beyond what he imagined.

Where Orwell was right, it wasn't so much with the watching as with the newspeak and doublethink. These things are right on the money. I could elaborate but this would veer hard into politics so I'll just stop there. But other than that, Huxley's Brave New World is a much better model:
Neil Postman wrote:What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egotism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture, preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies, the orgy porgy, and the centrifugal bumblepuppy. As Huxley remarked in Brave New World Revisited, the civil libertarians and rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny "failed to take into account man's almost infinite appetite for distractions." In 1984, Orwell added, people are controlled by inflicting pain. In Brave New World, they are controlled by inflicting pleasure. In short, Orwell feared that our fear will ruin us. Huxley feared that our desire will ruin us.
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Re: Bethesda data collection fuckery (split)

Postby Reactor » Sun Aug 12, 2018 4:03 pm

I know :) In Orwell's age, computerization was waaaaaaay beyond today's capabilities. If he'd see the potential in electronics, I bet he'd wrote 1984 in a different manner. The newspeak-doublethink of course is the fiction part of the book :)
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Re: Bethesda data collection fuckery (split)

Postby Enjay » Sun Aug 12, 2018 5:50 pm

To be fair, his book was as much a commentary on certain things that were happening in 1948 as they were a prediction of the future.

One of the interesting things about Sci-Fi, or other future predicting fiction, is that it tells you far more about the society at the time than it does about the future IMO. I mean, look at the original Star Trek. That lets me know far more about the 1960s than it does about the 23rd century.

Back to Orwell (kind of) I actually think that we are heading more in the direction of Aldous Huxley's Brave New World than we are Orwell's 1984.

[edit]Interesting image https://www.deviantart.com/rebelofgod/a ... -631700214 [/edit]
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Re: Bethesda data collection fuckery (split)

Postby Reactor » Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:39 pm

I never read Huxley, but I know about his books. I'm strongly tempted, however, to read it, so I can grab some useful advices. What was your impression about his works?
As for science-fiction and utopias, it was always kinda funny to watch and read people's predictions and opinions. Remember the pre-2000 craze? The media, the people, everyone was like "ZOMG itz 2000 now we gonna have fusion powerz an' flyin' carz, hoverboardz and shit"...and how big the disappointment was, when 2000 did not yield a hi-tech technological revolution for humankind, like in the movies, comic-books or literature. No 100 kilometre-high city-towers, cybronic megapolises, flying cars, teleportation, colonization of other planets. On the good side however, "end of ze world" was also postponed - TWICE (2012 Mayan prophecy). Compared to the popcult beliefs, Orwell's predictions were fairly...accurate.
This idealized mega-futuristic robotworld is what I'm gonna parodize in my game in the Future Fuckballz level :) I was more generous than the sci-fi writers of the past; the level will take place in 4000.
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Re: Bethesda data collection fuckery (split)

Postby Apeirogon » Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:55 am

Gez wrote:If you want to know how far it can go, read about what's happening in China thanks to its Social Credit System.

Does anyone know another example of consequences from spying/data leak? Because I still do not particularly understand, what should I be afraid of.
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Re: Bethesda data collection fuckery (split)

Postby Enjay » Mon Aug 13, 2018 7:20 am

Sort of related, but the principle is much the same:

I was at a lecture a few years back given by a leading forensic scene of crime investigator. He was asked if he thought everyone's DNA should be kept on a DNA database. His answer was interesting. I'll paraphrase (because, obviously, I don't remember exactly what he said) but the gist was very much this:

From a selfish point of view, yes, because it would make my job so much easier, but on balance, no. Why? Because I can be given no guarantee of who will have that data - now or in the future - and what they will want to do with it. I'll use the Dutch population census data as an example of what I'm talking about. The Dutch government had a very good census system. They had lots of data on file and the level of information that they had was second to none. That was all well and good and the data was being used for benign purposes. Then the Nazis invaded, got access to the files and were able to use it to track down Jews. Unless you know who is going to have your data in perpetuity (and you can't) then I am against all people being on a DNA database.

@Reactor, I haven't read much Huxley, but I did enjoy Brave New World. The tone, I felt, was quite different to many sci-fi authors and to the oppressiveness and starkness of Orwell's work but no less disturbing and thought provoking in its own way.
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