Nothing to Hide

Recently I left Facebook and Twitter. No better time to post this lovely poem by Gerben—along with these gouache paintings I made re-reading it before dawn.

“Nothing to Hide”
By Gerben

I don’t have anything to hide.
But I have something to lose.
I don’t want to lose
my freedom to hide something.

Whether I have something to hide
depends on who’s looking.
And whoever that is, or will be,
I can neither foresee nor control.

My loss of privacy
is another’s gain in power.
Where our data accumulate
this power will concentrate.

I thus claim my right to hide
not for myself, but for us all.
As data come to dominate,
the question we should contemplate:

To be a subject, or a citizen?