You’re never going to get access to your file at Central

Most democratic countries around the world have their own version of Freedom of Information (FOI) legislation already established on their statute books. The initiative towards this type of legislation was to act as a counterweight to the increasing amount of information being amassed by governments on their citizenry and started in the ’60s in LBJ’s administration. Since the internet, never mind social media, didn’t exist at the time, it’s mainly all aimed at prizing out of government hands the information they have about you or documentation pertinent to executive decisions on certain issues.

Most grownups are aware of the fact that the first impulse of any bureaucracy, which is what the executive branch of government usually comes down to, is to stamp everything with some level of secrecy on their own self-defined scale of excruciatingly graded right to know. ie Information is power, so never share it. It kinda worked although there was the usual tug-o-war between right to know and state security.

An outright refusal was usually a signal to unleash the dogs of war in the shape of real journalism, which was actually extant at the time. A heavily redacted document (bureaucratic double speak to avoid the dreaded censor word) left room for a lot of very imaginative speculations, but if the information requested was harmless and mostly the result of an anal compulsion to acquire and keep secret useless information regardless of its value, it was just easier to cough up the desired file.

Like the comic strip Spy vs Spy, it was always an ongoing move vs countermove between the requesters of information and government departments but one thing did become quickly apparent – the amount of sheer inaccuracy of the information held by government on individuals. It was so bad, that additional legislation was hurriedly drafted that obliged the bureaucracy to correct their files.

It was all held on paper across various departments and no attempt had ever been made to collate it all as without some common data capture standards and the almost complete absence of computers, it would have been impossible anyway. The truth was that 99.9% of people had only basic information recorded about them such as DOB, place of birth, tax history, marriages and deaths. The other 0.1% of people who had more usable information on them were in police and intelligence service files, which were usually excluded from FOI legislation anyway.

There are a number important things to remember about those times. The information, being on paper in several geographic areas, was not easily accessible. The information on a particular individual couldn’t be collated and the information was really a few bare facts rather than real information about them. If you were extremely lucky, you might have someone like Connie Sachs to put it all together for you. There was nothing that said anything about your tastes, political leanings and your religious beliefs. Finally, it was the executive branch of government in its various departmental guises collecting the information, and therefore ultimate accountability for its collection and use was enforced periodically at the ballot box.

That was then, this is now and all that legislation that gave you access to and the power to change information held about you is totally obsolete. Your government still collects information on you but it’s still of the basic facts form. The people who’re really collecting information rather than facts about you are big tech. Every time you use their web infrastructure, their social platforms or even do a few emails, information about you is being deduced by algorithms, that’s to say automatically.

Big tech and big corporate work hand in glove with the regime to identify any people who might represent a potential danger. If you’ve any doubts about that simple fact, you’ve only to consider the methods being used to identify the mass targets of the various purges, the denial of financial or support services by big business to political opponents, the open cooperation by all the major banks to furnish customer transaction activity without any legal documents being served and the brutal online censorship on social media platforms of any expression of disagreement with any regime dictated narrative.

The information they hold on you is almost fully collated now, well on the way to what I called your file at Central in a dystopian short story I wrote just before the Big Steal of 2020. You might think that their information on you rather than just being a few facts, might be just a bit more detailed than what the government holds on you because of what they call data enrichment, which is just a fancy way of guessing some fundamental stuff about you from a few bare facts, but you’d be wrong.

An investigation back in ’16 found out that Facebook alone has created at least 52,000 unique attributes to classify each user of their various data sucking platforms. What do you think the chances of getting those 52K things about you right automatically? What do you think about never knowing what those 52K attributes are? What do you think about the fact that you’ll never be allowed access to those 52K indicators about you? What do you think about having no right to amend them if they’re wrong?

What do you think about those attributes being used to automatically make decisions about you in the real world?

A chap got automatically banned from Instagram purely because too many of his posts contained the words black and white. I’ve no doubt his racist flag got an update ripple across the various integrated databases and I’m equally sure they weren’t reset when they found out he was a chess grandmaster discussing various game positions. You might get your account back, but in the digital world nobody is really arsed enough to right a wrong if it involves some coding because that involves both the admission of an error and spending some money.

A young man I know was given a suggestion by Facebook of a kid he went to school with years ago. Naturally enough, he did a friend request or whatever it is you do, and once in and reading the sort of cretinous, racist, neo-nazi and frankly tin foil hat stuff his old school chum was posting, promptly unfriended him.

Fine. We’ve all had the personal experience of meeting a friend of our youth who’d become a utter nutter with bells attached and decided not to exchange telephone numbers, but in the digital world things aren’t that simple. What pissed off my young friend was that a huge portion of Facebook’s suggestions for him from then on were assorted political extremists or conspiracy nutters involving aliens and lizards in human skins. Nearly every one, he told me angrily. Boy was he pissed off.

I didn’t have the heart to tell him that every friend suggestion he tried out who also turned out to be an inmate of Nuttersville just strengthened his likes nutters, fascists and loonies attribute, or whatever it’s called. He was killing his psycho-profile with every exploratory click on the friend request button. It wasn’t just that I didn’t have the heart, it was that he still believes big tech and social media are happy clappy things that’re just there to enrich your life, whereas I see them as something that’s evolved into a malignant cancer you never give an inch to. Not one. Never the twain shall meet these days or triggering will occur, and I also can’t be arsed to disabuse youth of simplistic notions they could rid themselves of in just five minutes of research.

When it comes to big tech, you play their game within their strict rules and with your eyes determinedly shut about what’s actually happening, and the University of Hard Knocks is lining up an eye-opening lesson for you.


Related articles by Pointman:

What if Biden wins?

How the purge of the military is being done

Banks collaborating with the regime

Click for a list of other articles.

6 Responses to “You’re never going to get access to your file at Central”
  1. NoFixedAddress says:

    Who gave you that photo of my office filing system?


    • NoFixedAddress says:

      ps I hit the thumbs up thinking to see who actually did the first.

      would you kindly reduce the thumbs up by one please.

      my fault.


  2. NoFixedAddress says:


    I have been following you for some years now, can’t remember when I first started checking your site, but this post is near the apex of all your posts.



  3. philjourdan says:

    As WOPR said – “The only way to win, is to not play the game.” I will never belong on any of those platforms.


  4. NoFixedAddress says:

    “Big Tech and Big Business have in effect become an extra-legislative body, an unelected branch of government, that is dictating to the country what it now can and cannot say.”


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