Madeleine Thien is the author of three books of fiction, including her most recent novel, Dogs at the Perimeter. Her fiction and essays have appeared in The Guardian, Granta, PEN America, The Walrus, Five Dials, Brick, New American City, and the Asia Literary Review, and her books have been translated into eighteen languages. In 2010, she received the Ovid Festival Prize, awarded each year to an international writer of promise. Born in Vancouver, Madeleine has lived in the Netherlands, Quebec City, Montreal, and Berlin, and has traveled widely in Southeast Asia. She is currently writer-in-residence at Simon Fraser University.
Imagine that I took all the e-mails and messages that I have ever written, as well as recordings of all Skype calls that I have ever made, and gave them to a group of strangers. Should we trust the priorities these strangers will have in 10 years, or 20 or 50? Should we trust that this immense cache of data will not become a commodity, traded to other governments that exist now, or will exist in the future?
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