Note to Self Hosts Internet Privacy Challenge

Are you concerned about your privacy online? If so, you are not alone!

According to Pew Research around 74% of Americans say their online privacy is “very important”. They want to maintain control over who sees their personal information. In the digital age, information is power. You have more power over your privacy if you have the right information.

National Public Radio and WNYC Studios is launching a new podcast challenge program designed to help you take back your digital identity. The series debuts January 30th with a privacy personality quiz.

“Americans love the convenience our digital devices offer, but we are deeply uncomfortable with super-targeted ads and the scooping up of all our data,” said Note to Self host Manoush Zomorodi.

Note to Self features a series of interactive challenges, podcasts, and live events.  The program will help participants learn:

  • Where their information goes 
  • How to weigh the trade-offs
  • How to make smart digital decisions

“People feel frustrated and are struggling to take back some control over their online life.” Zomorodi explained. “This week of challenges will help participants understand the privacy implications of their digital choices. It will give them strategies to feel better about those choices, online and off.”112untitled

The Privacy Paradox kicks off on Monday, January 30. It starts with a podcast and quiz to help you find your  “privacy set-point.” The quiz will help you measure changes in your feelings and actions towards privacy over the course of the project. 

Challenge Week runs from Monday, February 6 to Friday, February 10.  The following text summarizes the challenges:

Monday, February 6: “What Your Phone Knows”

Renowned cryptographer Bruce Schneier explains metadata and how to minimize digital tracking.

Tuesday, February 7:  “The Search for Your Identity” 

ProPublica senior reporter Julia Angwin explains what she learned from her investigation into Facebook’s algorithms. Joseph Turow, Professor at Penn’s Annenberg School for Communication, details how advertisers mine our behaviors and what we can do to get a fair deal.

Wednesday, February 8: “Something to Hide

Oxford Ethics of Information professor Luciano Floridi discusses the true nature of personal privacy and how it relates to cultivating your inner life. Plus, a tool that demonstrates just how deeply the internet can know you.

Thursday, February 9: “15 Minutes of Anonymity”

Turn off your phone for 15 minutes. Try to get away from CCTV cameras. Shut down the Wi-Fi. Elan Gale, executive producer of The Bachelor, discusses the performative aspects of social media, our culture. Highlights include the various ways people change their behavior when they know they are being watched.

Friday, February 10: “Your Personal Terms of Service”  

Define your acceptable conditions for sharing your private information with the help of the inventor of the World Wide Web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee.

Registration for The Privacy Paradox project is open at

Other Privacy & Tech Resources:

In the meantime, this article from Consumer Reports shares 66 tips and resources to help you protect your identity, security, and privacy online.

Balance is important in all aspects of our digital lives. See our previous post containing tips to unplug and keep your tech use in check.

Is your online privacy a top concern for you? Do you think you might sign up for a program like this? Why or why not?



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