A Little Frightening

Amazon reads your Kindle Highlights

Charming.  I have nothing to hide, and most readers would find nothing worth noting in the highlights I make from books.  Moreover, I have the wireless off most of the time, so it seems unlikely that I am a regular contributor to this data stream.  But it is seriously disturbing to consider that someone might be reading over your shoulder. 

I suppose it's part of the license agreement that I didn't pay much attention to; however, it hardly seems conducive to business.


  1. Most people in NINETEEN EIGHTY FOUR had nothing to hide from Big Brother, but every now and then the intrusion into personal lives became a bit too much (which is an understatement), and I suspect critical observers of the Amazon over-the-shoulder snooping can find significant parallels with Orwell's vision of a world in which personal privacy was an obsolete relic. I would be less sanguine than you about being observed, and you've given me another reason to forego Kindle and similar technology. Thanks for sharing the involuntary sharing involved in owning a Kindle.

  2. I have to agree with R. T. on this.

    What I share with others, I do voluntarily. It's my decision. However, involuntary sharing bothers me. Too much of it, unfortunately, is beyond my control, but that which is still in my control shall remain so. If that means forgoing some of today's electronic gadgetry, then so be it.

    Big Brother is watching: the v-word is "stallin."

  3. Gentlemen,

    I do not think you find me at all in disagreement. It makes sense that these things are communicated because the Amazon bookshelf makes your notes available to you again. And perhaps if this is an opt-in program, it is not so bad. Additionally, if you're doing any computing "in the cloud" you are giving up some of the privacy that you choose. However, my issue is if this collection and collation is done without my knowledge or consent to these things being used.

    I suppose one can argue that an aggregator is still anonymous. But I'm sufficiently perturbed to make a point of it here, and I can readily agree with the points both of you have made.

    Thank you for taking the time to comment.



  4. Steven,

    I agree. That's my major problem also. Does the individual know that this information is being collected, stored, and used in any way?

    I have no problems if there's full disclosure, which does not appear to be the situation so often.


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