A reminder to those of you who reveal too much on Facebook or in blog comments: There is no such thing as reputation bankruptcy:

n. A theoretical system that would give a person a fresh start on the web by deleting all of that person’s online text, photos, and other data.
-Word Spy

Related Words:

Category: Weblogs

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

21 Responses to “Word of the day: Reputation Bankruptcy”

  1. BR,

    Worry not, one of the ‘related Words’ tells the tale..

    Home > D > dataveillance « data spill daughter track »

    n. The ability to monitor a person’s activities by studying the data trail created by actions such as credit card purchases, cell phone calls, and Internet use.

    Example Citation:
    “Many Canadians don’t realize how extensive electronic surveillance has become in the past 20 years. There are safeguards and penalties for abuse in government, but information exists in countless private-sector databases, often unsecured ones. … That’s why Big Brother is less a concern, critics say, than the thousands of profit-motivated Little Brothers already in our midst. People who do [not] understand about ‘dataveillance’ are often lulled by empty promises of confidentiality, especially online.”
    —Lynda Hurst, “The ‘Little Brothers’ Are Watching You,” The Toronto Star, August 12, 2000

    Earliest Citation:
    Dataveillance is the systematic use of personal data systems in the investigation or monitoring of the actions or communications of one or more persons.
    —Roger A. Clarke, “Information Technology and Dataveillance,” Communications of the ACM, May, 1988

    Dataveillance is an inelegant blend of data and surveillance. It has been around since the late 1980s, but its use has jumped significantly over the past few years thanks to the increasingly widespread concerns for individual privacy in the Internet age. The term was coined in 1988 by Roger A. Clarke, a professor of computer science at the Australian National University.

    A synonym that isn’t as popular, but rolls off the tongue a little better, is consumer espionage, which was coined by former Wall Street Journal reporter Erik Larson in his 1992 book, The Naked Consumer…”

    and, for further http://search.yippy.com/search?input-form=clusty-simple&v%3Asources=webplus&v%3Aproject=clusty&query=persistant+surveillance

    for those who ‘think’ that that is ‘bottled up’ in the DoD vertical..


    LSS: there are ‘other things’ to be concerned with, than, whether or not, “reputation bankruptcy” exists..

  2. Thor says:

    Everything you do online, regardless of where you do it, is being monitored, at all times, by someone. Don’t fool yourselves into thinking there is any such thing as privacy online.

  3. I always believed that if you weren’t willing to die for what you say then why are you even saying it

  4. ashpelham2 says:

    I beleive everything is being logged, and stored someplace, but it’s not easy to access, unless there is a REASON to do so (court order, specific personal surveillance by a government or quasi-gov entity, etc). I don’t think there’s some huge warehouse in Area 51 that is keeping up with everykeystroke and every site visited. But I do think it’s possible that you can have your words and actions online be queried by aforementioned authorities, and they can nail your ass to the wall.

  5. Thor says:

    ashpelham2 – The ISP’s keep track of everything. Any competent employer will also keep track. There used to be a guy who posted here all the time about calls he’d have with clients. Haven’t seen him in ages, and I’ve often wondered if he’d been fired for it.

  6. Petey Wheatstraw says:

    As for mega- data/info analysis, Stasi warehouses full of people’s forever unread notes on their neighbors come to mind. However, we’re digital, so maintaining and searching the record, when and if needed, isn’t too difficult. OTOH, even in digital form, the “We have evidence that you’ve been looking at porn” Division must fill at least a couple of warehouses.

    If the Corporatists want you in prison or otherwise put in your place, the laws are vague enough and the “evidence” great enough (in quantity — felonious content will be determined by the prosecutor), that you won’t stand a chance of defense. Due to the severity and complexity of our laws, most Americans have probably unwittingly committed a felony.

    Here’s a little must-read something on Corporatist surveillance:


  7. dwkunkel says:

    The advice I give to new hires at work is to never write anything in email or online that you wouldn’t mind having your boss, spouse, or parents read. You never know what is going to be forwarded to whom.

    An online pseudonym is also about as secure as a $5 padlock.

  8. DeDude says:

    WHAT !!!! – Rattrap – Now you tell me.

    You mean to say I can’t just give it up and become DeOtherDude?

  9. wally says:

    I’m glad I’m not really wally.

  10. VennData says:

    Lollapalooza 2010: Everything You Need To Know Before You Go

    “…LEDERHOSEN’S BIERGARTEN: Lederhosen’s features fine craft-brewed beers such as Becks, Stella Artois, Hoegaarden, and Budweiser…”


    Will HP change this in time to protect their ‘Interrep?’

  11. Transor Z says:

    This Transor Z action figure keeps telling me to drop f-bombs in blog comments so now I’m like Dr. Doom — the mask is welded to my face… If only this cheesy Japanese anime voice in my head would stop!!!!

  12. Thor says:

    Tranzor – hah!

  13. Alex says:

    I guess its possible to be morally bankrupt, but not reputationally in this condition.

    Seriously, the concept of being bankrupt is not that you automatically get some free pass, but that you are out of resources. The extra-nice get out of jail free thing was added to move things along.

    I do not worry about internet privacy. The authorities can screw themselves!

    Wait a minute, I hear a knock at the door…

  14. What sort of reputation would expect a Curmudgeon would be interested in protecting?

  15. Bruman says:

    What prompted this post?

  16. Adult Franklin411 says:

    Don’t be like “Tiger Mike” Davis – http://www.lettersofnote.com/2010/08/tiger-oil-memos.html

  17. beaufou says:

    We all live and learn through our mistakes, what is reputation bankruptcy?
    I would rather face a man who can live with his past than a newborn asshole who just reinvented himself.

  18. ToNYC says:

    Earliest citation:
    As real identity grows in importance on the Net, the intermediaries demanding it ought to consider making available a form of reputation bankruptcy. Like personal financial bankruptcy, or the way in which a state often seals a juvenile criminal record and gives a child a “fresh start” as an adult, we ought to consider how to implement the idea of a second or third chance into our digital spaces.
    —Jonathan Zittrain, The Future of the Internet and How to Stop It, Yale University Press, April 14, 2008

    The phrase is a humbug! Debt is discharged in bankruptcy because the payment stream is insufficient to keep the financial boat above water or floating solvency.
    Reputations are more than a collection of web spider scrapings catching reported and preserved misapprehensions and some truth. All is just data and there is no conceivable method of removing all the cached files everywhere.
    You should see the college photos of Sergey and Larry I have collected.
    Have a nice Data!

  19. formerlawyer says:

    “Reputation is what other people know about you. Honor is what you know about yourself.” – Aral Vorkosigan

  20. Sayitisntso says:

    “The purest treasure mortal times afford is spotless reputation.”

    – William Shakespeare