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Cultural notebook: the disadvantages of privacy

A century or two from now, human beings may no longer have inner lives—and it will all be the fault of BT customer services

By Sam Leith   July 2010

Lily Allen’s tweets lit a fire under BT

Not long ago, someone who uses BT in their online business described the company on his Facebook page as “a bunch of unaccountable, business-shafting, useless bastards.” I don’t know what it had done to deserve that, but I daresay the description truthfully conveyed his degree of satisfaction.

A few hours later, he got a chirpy call out of the blue from a BT customer service person, asking what his beef with the company was and how they could help. Rather than be pleased, this Mr X found this contact unsettling. “I have…

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