Insurance companies create the Internet of Things You Can't Get Away From

When people who don't agree to bug themselves with devices that snitch on their habits and foibles to insurers are charged huge premiums for their "choice," is it really a choice at all?

The point is well made in a Slashdot post from Jbmartin6, who points to several news-stories and business ideas that make the Internet of Things look more and more like a one-way ticket to involuntary, total, intimate surveillance than a system for helping us interact with our environments better.

Here Comes the Panopticon: Insurance Companies

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  1. I guess there's still AAA - they barely have a website. They're probably at least a decade away from being organized enough to move forward with black-box monitoring.

  2. Mix in government forcing people to have insurance, and you've got a recipe for dystopia.

  3. Insurance distributes the consequences of "bad things", but does nothing to reduce those consequences. The more that responsibility is allocated to those able to actually reduce the incidence of "bad things" (drive slower - don't rely on insurance to fix the car after you prang it, or, eat healthier - don't rely on insurance to fix your heart-attack or diabetes etc), the lower the economic cost to society as a whole. The sorts of data-driven approaches discussed in the linked discussions and sites can theoretically achieve a move in that direction, but there is a point where our societal well-being is better served by sharing the consequences, to ensure that a morally optimum solution is achieved. In pure economic terms, this may appear more costly, of course (and result in lower bonuses to insurance company execs).

  4. believe the government ALREADY forces people to have insurance. least auto and health insurance.

  5. My favorite part about this is that people can't seem to wrap their head around the latest health findings. My family is prone to obesity. I eat healthy. I work out and my family as a whole is NOT at a higher risk for heart disease(historically). But it's basically to the point now where I'm going to have to start paying higher premiums or deal with a constant bombardment of hormones telling my brain that I'm starving to death. And as far as the insurance company and most people are concerned, this isn't even an issue.

Continue the discussion bbs.boingboing.net

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