You’re very smart

Here’s an example: you’re reading a blog, any blog. You know the blogosphere exists. Believe it or not, you’re among 10% of all people who surf the net.

This hit home when I was giving a talk at Eli Lilly. Before the talk, I mentioned a blog to a senior person who was prepping me. Here was somebody with authority, experience and, I would imagine, some online chops. Not only hadn’t she been to a blog, she’d never heard of one.

Listening to NPR today, I heard a bunch of talking heads ranting about Google. In particular, they were repeating the canard that Google’s gmail product somehow invades our privacy. It must, they asserted loudly, because the ads are contextual, which means your mail is getting read.

News flash! It’s getting read by a computer.
News flash! Computers are already reading your mail! Spam filters, for example.
News flash! If someone wants to read your mail, it’s pretty easy to do.

Yet the canard persists. I’m sure Google was amazed at how vociferous the irrational attacks on privacy invasion were.

That’s my point. Being smart doesn’t matter. Having a blog or doing something technical is irrelevant if you’re invisible or seen as a threat by everyone else.