The privacy of your data means a lot to me. I feel very badly about how you shared all your favorite television shows and music and restaurants on Facebook, and how Facebook had the nerve to turn around and show you advertisements that echoed your interests and then sold your information to others. How dare they — and every other online presence — take such advantage of you. But to save you further turmoil, I promise this will be the last time I mention your quaint notions about privacy.
To protect my own readers’ privacy and avoid drawing the wrath of EU bureaucrats who would love to haul my data-careless ass to Brussels for a Zuckerberg-style tongue-lashing, I have made important plain-English updates to my Terms of Service. If you care anything about safeguarding yourself, your data, and me, then you should read and memorize these:
§ 1. If you comment on one of my posts and I disagree with you, I promise that I will only disparage you in the privacy of my own home. But who knows what my wife will say and what she will share. She is not bound by these terms. So, your call.
§ 2. If you share your e-mail address when making a comment, I promise to re-use it only when I order weapons from Soldier of Fortune magazine or when I write to the FBI about my shady-looking neighbors and their really annoying little dogs.
§ 3. Under my new policy, I will no longer compile the IP addresses of the visitors of this site, and then brew craft beers, and then name my beers after your IP addresses. Too bad, because the one I was planning to name for Reader 18.104.22.168 was a satisfying brew. On the other hand, Reader 22.214.171.124, your beer tasted like rotted geraniums. You are lucky I tossed that batch before your reputation was sullied.
§ 4. Here at The 100 Billionth Person, we respect privacy. We pay particular respect to Private Gomer Pyle, Private Maxwell Klinger, Private Investigator Sam Spade, Private Detective Nancy Drew and Private Duty Nurse Carolyn Cutler, whose visage graces this post.
§ 5. People in Britain pronounce privacy with a short i, to make it sound like principle. But I live in America, and I pronounce privacy with a long i, to make it sound like I don’t care.
§ 6. Visitors who read half of one post and then get tired of The 100 Billionth Person and leave the site (and I know who you are) will be treated the same as people who walk out of a church service during the first hymn. Your IP address will be sent to Franklin Graham, son of the late Billy Graham, for followup and shaming. And roundly deserved, I say.
§ 7. When you use a mobile device to access The 100 Billionth Person, we may install a tiny data file on your device. This file is a harmless little app that runs in the background and uniquely identifies your device. Also, this app randomly disables one icon every day. It is a fun game, when you think about it, guessing which one of your icons will be the next to disappear.
§ 8. We do not sell your information to advertisers or commercial interests. We tried, but no one was interested.