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Take the ACLU Facebook quiz to see what kind of open book you are

Maybe you don’t fear facing off with an army intelligence interrogator, FBI detective, or secret service agent sitting in a Fusion Center determined to anticipate your next move. But what about a loan officer, insurance adjuster, arbitration negotiator, prospective employer, or plaintiff’s lawyer taking your deposition, who’s armed with your psychological profile made up of your Facebook quiz answers? Your plan to defeat an IRS polygraph by clenching your butt-cheeks is a plan B of olden days. The ACLU has been anticipating these eventualities for you. They’ve devised their own Facebook quiz to illustrate.

The Facebook disclaimer makes clear, between the lines, that when you “allow” an application access to your personal information, the app’s third party can suck up every last detail of your file, “for the quiz to work.” It also grants access to each of your friends’ entire files, each time YOU click “allow.”

Now you may feel like you’ve put everything up on Facebook voluntarily. You can presume your friends did too. And although our info is limited to our friend circles, we probably assume that determined sleuths can extract it all anyway. And that’s certainly true. Even casual idiots can sidle up to glean important details without arousing our suspicions. We presume no insurance company or parole officer is going to preemptively fill their files with happenstance biographical queries, and so we feel safe.

We overlook that the great value of social networks to us, the web of connections, provides the filing tabs by which information aggregators can accumulate their data in a useful, ie. commercial, manner.

Soon we’ll have to worry about underwriters or graduate schools or fiance’s parents dismissing us outright based on our DNA. When that day comes, every marriage will be arranged, and preschools will have sufficient information to accept applicants in utero.

For now the thought of an accessible collation of my Watson-Glaser, Yale-Brown, Myers-Briggs, and which-potted-plant-most-resembles-you tests already hinders my being able to look you in the eye. I am who I want to be, and my 16th Century royaum is shrinking.

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