Seth Finkelstein has tagged me with the “five things you don’t know about me” meme spreading through the blogosphere, and I figure if Seth is game enough to play, I can too 🙂

  1. About 8 years ago, before I returned to academia (and, eventually, privacy advocacy), I worked for an electronic payment processing company (we made the credit card machines at stores & restaurants work). While there, I developed an Age Verification system (similar to this) where liquor stores and bars could swipe mag-stripe equipped drivers licenses through their credit card terminal in order to easily calculate the age, fight fraudulent IDs, and retain a record of the swipe for law enforcement purposes. An important part of my sales pitch with this product was that the bar/liquor store could collect the customer’s demographic data stored on mag stripe for marketing purposes. Today, I shudder at the memory that I helped conceive and develop such a privacy-invading system…
  2. My junior high school was a bit rough (for Wisconsin standards – this wasn’t the South Bronx). In the spirit of self-preservation, I bought “protection” by doing the bullies’ algebra homework.
  3. I am an administrator at Wikipedia, and a recovering wikiholic.
  4. I’ve seen both Barry Manilow and Neil Diamond in concert…multiple times…
  5. My wife and I are expecting our first baby in just over 9 weeks.

My turn to pass it on: Siva Vaidhyanathan, Chris Hoofnagle, Alice Marwick, Joseph Reagle, and Jeremy Hunsinger

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