AFFIRMATIVE PRIVACY GENERAL 12
PRIVACY IS ESSENTIAL FOR QUALITY OF LIFE
PRIVACY IS THE ESSENTIAL DETERMINANT OF QUALITY OF LIFE IN AN INFORMATION SOCIETY
WILLIAM SAFIRE, The New York Times, May 1, 2000, SECTION: Section A; Page 23; TITLE: Essay; Consenting Adults // acs-EE2001
Obviously, all these activities erode privacy. What's alarming is that some commentators have apparently written off that value as an anachronism in an "information age." Who cares if once-intimate details of people's lives circulate from one databank to another? What important interest or principle is threatened by that?
The answer to these questions goes well beyond privacy in the traditional sense. It's not only a matter of whether we can keep the phone numbers we call secret or our medical needs concealed or our taste in Web sites hidden. Even more important is the question of what it will mean to be a citizen of the emerging information society - whether we will be masters of new information resources or targets for bombardment by those controlling the flow of data.
PRIVACY ALLOWS CREATIVITY
Fred H. Cate, Brookings Institution, 1997; PRIVACY IN THE INFORMATION AGE, EE2001 -mfp p. 25-26
Privacy provides individuals with an opportunity for selfevaluation. Solitude and the opportunity for reflection are essential to creativity. Individuals need space and time in which to, process the information that is constantly confronting them, especially as society grows more information dependent. Privacy, according to Alan Bates, allows the individual the opportunity to "assess the flood of information received, to consider alternatives and possible consequences so that he may then act as consistently and appropriately as possible." 21 Privacy also recognizes the interest of the individual "in the proper timing of the decision to move from private reflection or intimate conversation to a more general publication of acts and thoughts. This is the process by which one tests his own evaluations against the responses of his peers."
INDIVIDUALS NEED PRIVACY TO PROTECT THE IDEAS AND COMMUNICATION
Fred H. Cate, Brookings Institution, 1997; PRIVACY IN THE INFORMATION AGE, EE2001 -mfp p. 27
The final value of individual privacy identified by Westin is the opportunity it provides for limited and protected communication, thereby avoiding "the situation in which each individual was utterly candid in his communications with others, saying exactly what he knew or felt at all times," which he characterizes as "the greatest threat to civilized social life." 25 This value of privacy recognizes that individuals require opportunities to share confidences with their family, friends, or close associates. The information may be particularly valuable to the person to whom it is disclosed, and the opportunity for private communications may facilitate a response that is important to the original speaker.