Everybody’s ‘digital dossiers’

Most people have no idea how many details of their lives are out there on the Net – copious detail, increasingly easy for anyone to find and put together. "These data points, some publicly accessible, others safeguarded to various degrees by companies and agencies that collect and store this data 'make' Andy's identity – as it forms, even before he himself begins to shape it," starting with the sonogram that goes into hospital records and the details behind a newborn's bar-coded bracelet. "Andy" is just a name pulled out of the air by the producers of a video on our "digital dossiers." The video is a project of the Digital Natives group at Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet and Society. "Andy's digital dossier will even grow after his death – photos or videos of the funeral, RIP messages on MSN Messenger, or as Facebook status posts. Andy probably never knew how large his dossier was. How aware are you of the digital tracks you leave behind?" the producers ask. At the end of it are some resources for further information about the digital tracks we leave just about everywhere we go, online or offline. Here's a description in the Digital Natives blog.


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