Satire No. 2: Colbert Takes on Eric Schmidt, Google, and Facebook’s Mining and Selling of Personal Data

Google’s CEO, Eric Schmidt, “predicts, apparently seriously, that every young person one day will be entitled automatically to change his or her name on reaching adulthood in order to disown youthful hijinks stored on their friends’ social media sites”. Schmidt made the statement in an interview with The Wall Street Journal’s Holman Jenkins that ran on August 14, 2010.

Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert took umbrage with Schmidt’s attitude towards privacy, and created this skit. He calls it, “The Word – Control-Self-Delete“. It is hysterical. He completely skewers Google, and throws in Facebook for good measure. The description of the skit promises:

Surgically altering your appearance and getting rid of old friends will make you the ideal job candidate.


My favorite part is Colbert’s ending statement:

Of course, there is one other answer. Google and Facebook could stop invasively data-mining and selling our private data to the highest bidder. But that would be asking them to change who they are. And that’s not fair.

What do you think of Colbert’s skewering of Schmidt, et al?

[Via Jamie Court @Consumer Watchdog’s Inside Google.]

Jewel Ward
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Jewel Ward

Founder and Consultant at Impact Zone Consultancy
Nice to meet you! I am Jewel Ward, founder of Impact Zone ( Our specialties are search engine optimization and digital stewardship for creative industry websites.

We work hard to serve our clients’ needs so they can solve their technology problems. Our goal is to enable our creative clients to succeed digitally in whatever form success means to them.

Here are three fun facts about me. I consider coffee and chocolate food groups. I am an INFJ. I love longboard surfing.
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