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Privacy in The Land of the Free

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posted on Jan, 17 2013 @ 12:44 PM
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When I was last out visiting the US of A back in 2004, I found something very strange to occur that I was not expecting. I found that when I wanted to use services or buy products that in the majority of cases the person serving me would ask for my personal details. I'm talking, name, address, telephone number and date of birth. I found this truely obsurd, especially when there was no actual need to take these details for the services/products I was requesting. But what came at an even bigger suprise was the look of confusion on the clerks face when I refused to give such details, they really didn't know what to do, it was almost like they never encountered anybody refusing to give their details before. People say that in my country that we are not free, but I can at least buy a Pizza (collection from store) and not be asked for my life story, a simple first name will do.

So how can the US of A, the self proclaimed land of the free actually be free when there seems little room for any kind of privacy, at least in terms of consumerism? Why does it not get my American friends backs up when they have to submit this kind of information, generally without question?

Another thing that blew my mind, is there are online databases in America that you can get access to with a real estate license where you can look anybody up (I looked Jenifer Aniston up for a laugh), It will display all their personal details, all known addresses and how much their mortgage loan is outstanding and what company with. Pretty much all of the information anybody could possibly know about their property.

Do you not find all of this a bit uncomfortable?
edit on 17-1-2013 by michael1983l because: (no reason given)
edit on 17-1-2013 by michael1983l because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 17 2013 @ 12:51 PM
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reply to post by michael1983l
 





Why does it not get my American friends backs up when they have to submit this kind of information, generally without question?


because they don't have to provide it. The stores ask, but you don't have to provide it.



posted on Jan, 17 2013 @ 12:57 PM
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Originally posted by phishyblankwaters
reply to post by michael1983l
 





Why does it not get my American friends backs up when they have to submit this kind of information, generally without question?


because they don't have to provide it. The stores ask, but you don't have to provide it.


Ok, I thought that should be the case, but the reaction of the Clerks in the stores led me to believe that somebody doing this was doing something out of the ordinary. I mean a guy in Dominos Pizza virtually refused to give me a pizza until he could put something into his computer. Plus the pizza was terrible.



posted on Jan, 17 2013 @ 12:58 PM
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I'm confused as to the need for it, and sigh at the tedium of having to do it when all I want to do is pay and leave.
Usually all I get asked for is my phone number, and this isn't really all that often. Then again, I don't go to very many places.
Maybe I should start saying, "I'd rather not", because who knows what they've been doing with it? Advertisement reference, maybe. But I'm sure it has a lot to do with money.

I didn't know they could refuse to serve you if you don't tell them anything though.

edit on 17-1-2013 by EllaMarina because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 17 2013 @ 01:01 PM
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reply to post by EllaMarina
 


He didn't refuse to serve me as such but he would not take the money until he could write something into his computer. I told him to make it up. All this happened in L.A. if it makes any difference.



posted on Jan, 17 2013 @ 01:25 PM
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I don't run into this too often down here in Texas, but when I do, I just go ahead and give them the first thing that comes to mind (pick 3) +555-1212 live at 123 4th street name is tom jones - keeps me from getting unwanted catalogs and mail offers too...

ganjoa



posted on Jan, 17 2013 @ 01:31 PM
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reply to post by michael1983l
 


Im a contractor and get it a Lot when buying Supplies at Home Depot and a couple other Places.

I just Calmly say "No need to tell you"

There usually is a Frozen few seconds , followed by a Dirty Look, but I dont care, considering the Source.



posted on Jan, 17 2013 @ 03:02 PM
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I can go either way on this.

On the one hand, it probably lets them target me with ads and coupons for things that I like. On the other hand, it lets them target me with phone calls.

Other than that, I can't say I'm too worried. I know people are afraid for privacy reasons, but I can't say that I'm scared that there's any way that I could be harmed even if there was some huge world-wide database of all the things I've bought and where I go throughout the day.

Heck, maybe that would be a good thing. It'd create some jobs for some poor slob to have to monitor each and every one of our activities and find out that we bought some Ritz crackers and cheese in a can last Tuesday.





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