Interesting to see the Irish Times editorial re Internet privacy. I commented previously re my own concerns on the level of surveillance which is now omnipresent. The editorial references comments made recently by Eric Schmidt. Schmidt somewhat controversially has suggested a notion whereby people might wipe the slate clean and start with a new identity at some instant in their lives. He has also been keen to emphasise the difference between privacy and anonymity.
There are no easy answers here. You cannot have much of the desired localisation of services without providing personal information – but there is always a balance between what you are willing to reveal and what you will accept as personalised service. Facebook’s latest expansion of its service to support specification of your location is another example of this.