In the older days when people recorded history on basic apparatuses, from cave walls to papyrus, record keeping was a messy and a difficult task to accomplish. Historians would have to make sure that the documents are in chronological order, as well as in apprehensive forms. To add to this complication, documents in foreign languages would have to be translated, leading to different translations and interpretations, and thus producing different versions of the same work. The greatest example of all time of such multiplicity is the Bible.
With the introduction of internet in the 1990′s and the advanced technology, record keeping has become much more simplified and accessible to the general public. This made keeping track of all events, from personal to global, an easy task, or perhaps too easy. With Twitter archiving all tweets made by its millions of users, it is possible to pull up all of the tweets that a user has posted from the creation of the account. The question here is, does a line need to be drawn to protect the privacy of its users? Although archiving every single tweet that users publish could be useful for historians in the future, perhaps a less invasive method would be to give Twitter’s users the authority to grant the website the permission to archive their posts.
And then there is Wikileaks: doing the complete opposite of what Twitter and Facebook seem to be doing. Instead of storing personal information and possibly distributing it just as Twitter and Facebook are, Wikileaks archived the government’s classified information and distributed a good portion of it to the general public, wherever internet was accessible and the files were available to be downloaded. The U.S. is attempting to bring Julian Assange, the chief editor and founder of Wikileaks, into the homeland so that he can be tried within the country’s jurisdiction for espionage. A question that is raised here is, if America took offense at the actions of Wikileaks for archiving and distributing the cables, why is it that America disrespects the privacy of its citizens by getting a hold of and archiving personal information of the people? Surely the two opposite sides of the spectrum are of different scales and magnitudes, but when it comes down to ethics and the basis behind it, the two ideas are almost equivalent. Sounds like double standard to me.