Do movies predict the future?

By now you probably heard about the problems that Google is having in China. If not, you can get the details from a post I published earlier this month, here. Basically, Chinese hackers, likely on behalf of the Chinese government hacked in to the Gmail accounts of various individuals in what we in the western world view as a violation of personal privacy and human rights. This post is not really about that because I’ve already done that. This post has to do with a report I read on CNN recently that suggests that the hackers used a back door in the system which was set up so that the US government can look at data on people who the authorities have search warrants for. Also, other democratic countries like Canada, the UK and Sweden are trying to pass similar laws that will give them this type of access.

It is a little ironic that of all the ways Chinese hackers used to violate human rights, it was a system that democratic countries use to aid in criminal investigations that allowed them to do it. Regardless, the thought that came to mind was of all the futuristic movies that set a scenario that in the future, corporations replace government and actually run and control all of us and we are no longer democratic as we know it today. I won’t list the movies as there isn’t one specific movie that I’m thinking of rather a theme that I’m sure you’ve seen in a number of films.

If you think about, when these companies like Google, telecommunication companies, among others create systems in which they gather personal and private information about their customers and just about everyone really, then that does seem like a first step to becoming what those movies illustrate. Now, I am not a conspiracy theorist or anti-business, if you have read any of my previous posts or my About page you’ll see that it’s clear that I am quite the opposite of that. However, I am not a fan of private business having access to personal information that is not directly involved in the business I do with them as a customer. I do understand the need for responsible governments to have certain access to people’s info to catch bad guys but the rules should not broad in scope and there should be a serious set of criteria that must be met in order to warrant looking at that type of info. I’m not saying that there currently is not a high level of criteria for governments to meet, I honestly am not too familiar with those laws, but I’m just saying that should be the case regardless.

The big difference between reality and those movies is a very specific turning point that has not occurred and hopefully will not occur in our lifetime. That is that the companies become powerful enough that they do not adhere to government and country laws and do as they wish. In today’s world that is not possible because worst comes to worst the military would get involved and companies do not possess that type of power, but if in the future that changes and they become big and powerful enough, then they would answer to no one.

I realize this post is not as realistic and actual like all my other posts have been, but I thought it was an interesting thought triggered by what I learned about these companies’ information gathering and distribution capabilities.