Monday, June 19, 2006

Esther Dyson at Identity Mashup 2006

Listening to Esther chime in on the opening panel "What You Need to Know About Identity"

Her high-level overview of the Accountable Net:
The accountable net notion is peer-to-peer (I'll be accountable to you, and you be accountable to me) and that only works with a persistent identity.

The first commandment of the Accountable Net: Do ask, don't lie.

You have every right to ask who I am and what I've done. I don't need to answer, but if I don't I can't expect to be extended the same privileges as those who do answer. If I do answer, I cannot lie (and if you don't like my answer, you don't have to extend me priviledges you don't want to).

Dyson was just at the Where2.0 conference (all about maps and location and GPS and stuff like that). What the conference was really about was identity: you in the map (as an avatar in Second Life, or as a place on a Google Map), and all the tools for representing self on the map.

Do we want privacy or do we want attention? Newest tools are about attention, establishing a conspicuous identity in the world. But we don't realize the slime trail we're leaving. When we do see it, we may be alarmed at what can be traced back to us. We need better understanding of the "cost" of using these new attention-getting tools.

I like her ability to cut to the chase on the challenge ahead (bold is mine):
The debate isn't about whether there will be a national ID card or a chip or what have you... we're already there. It's called your DNA. So, the problem isn't so much identity theft, but that folks will aggregate your segregated identities and add stuff you don't want there by aggregating.

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