Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Verizon Apologizes to Obama: Sorry We Snooped on Your Account

This may make it easier for Barack Obama to kick his well-publicized BlackBerry addiction: News that Verizon employees have been snooping through his phone records.

Verizon (VZ) said Thursday night that “a number of Verizon Wireless employees have, without authorization, accessed and viewed President-Elect Barack Obama’s personal cell phone account.” Verizon says the phone is a “simple flip-phone,” and not a Berry, and that it has been inactive for several months. But the startling public admission should be enough to convince Obama, if he needed any more prompting, that he’s going to have to give up his prized gadget.

It may also prompt Verizon to rethink its long-running ad campaign where its customers are followed around by hordes of the mobile company’s employees.


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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work