The passage in the book that I found most interesting comes from Chapter 4. Marcus discusses what it feels like to be locked up with all his privacy revoked. I often wondered why it matters so much that we keep our lives private. If we are doing nothing wrong, why try to keep a secret. For example, I have a friend who refuses to use Google because of their tendency to keep information regarding users.
In this passage, Doctorow relates privacy to something we all can understand: using the bathroom. He proclaims that there is nothing inherently wrong with using the bathroom, but we would never volunteer to do so while others were watching. In regards to personal data and using the bathroom, he feels: "It's not about doing something shameful. It's about doing something private. It's about your life belonging to you."
I realized that having nothing to hide is not the same thing as putting your life on blast. I could also better understand Marcus's plight in his fight for privacy after reading the comparison. As an adamant technology adopter, I know how intruding services can be, but there is also a trade-off. In the case of Google, allowing its servers to hold your data means better search results. I think the main question we must ask ourselves is: Is the trade-off worth the breach in privacy?
Image: Glass House by James Vaughan