Ben Franklin's Web Site: Privacy and Curiosity from Plymouth Rock to the Internet
Robert Ellis SmithISBN: 0930072146;
This new book explores the hidden niches of American history to discover the tug between Americans' yearning for privacy and their insatiable curiosity. The book describes Puritan monitoring in Colonial New England, then shows how the attitudes of the founders placed the concept of privacy in the Constitution. This panoramic view continues with the coming of tabloid journalism in the Nineteenth Century, and the reaction to it in the form of a new right - the right to privacy. The book includes histories of wiretapping, of credit reporting, of sexual practices, of Social Security numbers and ID cards, of modern principles of privacy protection, and of the coming of the Internet and the new challenges to personal privacy it brings. "Robert Ellis Smith's expose of privacy invasion will be one of the sleeper best-selling books..." wrote columnist William Safire in The New York Times, December 1999. "His numerous books are required reading for anyone concerned about the ongoing...
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