The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Reasons I do not text...

It appears that a number of people are concerned with their privacy in regards to texting and e-mails while using employer provided equipment. Since I am retired, I do not have this problem but many of you may. It is a big enough problem, apparently, that the US Supreme Court has become involved. It is likely that the Court will hear arguments in the Spring regarding Ontario v. Quon.

The case is interesting. To sum up, "a police officer in the city of Ontario had a right to privacy regarding the texts he sent on his department-issued pager, even though his chief discovered that some of them were sexually explicit messages to his girlfriend." (that would be Ontario, California)
[Court to rule on privacy of texting]

Most employers make it clear, in one way or another (usually by agreements signed by the employee) that using employer provided equipment for personal use is forbidden. Apparently, according to the police officer, this case is different. One wonders if the police department does not have the officers sign for the equipment provided but simply trusts them not to abuse said equipment?

I wonder, on the other hand, how dumb a police officer is that would send sexually explicit messages to his girlfriend on a pager provided by his department? By the way, the officer was not disciplined in any way for this, he was just upset enough by having his privacy violated that he brought suit.


And to think I used to get mad because my company blocked me from accessing online crossword puzzle sites...

Even if you are using your own computer or cell phone or whatever to send and receive messages, they may not remain very private. Just ask Tiger Woods.

And texting can be dangerous (beyond what Tiger Woods is going through)...




Granted, the fault is primarily with the city whose workers should have put safety cones (or some kind of barrier) out before removing the manhole cover. But still... Don't we have some responsibility to pay a little attention to what is going on around us?


Silly me... apparently not.

7 comments:

Steven said...

We're specifically allowed to use our (multiple - I have 3) company-provided cell phones and cell plans as our personal phones (as well as our business phones, they took away our office phones).

I look at it as a ~$1500/yr benefit.

Douglas said...

Steven, I am assuming you use common sense and do not presume you have any real privacy in your text messaging?

Steven said...

Google Voice does my text messaging :)

Small Footprints said...

Personally I think that people who are worried about the privacy of their message should probably think about delivering that message in some way other than texting, voice mailing, typing or leaving a YouTube video. And people ... if you don't want the world to see your message, don't type it in twitter or facebook.

Small Footprints
http://reducefootprints.blogspot.com

TEStazyk said...

Why is it that some people seem to think that technology is some sort of gift with no strings attached? And there seems to be an inverse relationship between how much of a technological cocoon someone wraps themself in and common sense. Not only should we have some sense of our surroundings, we are also responsible for understanding the limits of the technology and implications of it's use. BTW, I would love to have seen the text message the girl was composing as she walked. I'm sure it was something (1) urgent and (2) intelligent.

TEStazyk said...

Why is it that some people seem to think that technology is some sort of gift with no strings attached? And there seems to be an inverse relationship between how much of a technological cocoon someone wraps themself in and common sense. Not only should we have some sense of our surroundings, we are also responsible for understanding the limits of the technology and implications of it's use. BTW, I would love to have seen the text message the girl was composing as she walked. I'm sure it was something (1) urgent and (2) intelligent.

Steven said...

We're specifically allowed to use our (multiple - I have 3) company-provided cell phones and cell plans as our personal phones (as well as our business phones, they took away our office phones).

I look at it as a ~$1500/yr benefit.