LEGISLATIVE APPROACHES TO PRIVACY PROTECTION FAIL
LEGISLATIVE SOLUTIONS TO PRIVACY ARE DANGEROUS, IT SHOULD FOCUS ON MAJOR ISSUES LIKE MEDICAL INFORMATION AND ELECTRONIC SURVEILLANCE
Charles Sykes, Senior Fellow at the Wisconsin Policy Institute, THE END OF PRIVACY, 1999, EE2001 -JGM, p. 151
But there are definite limits to the power of legislation. More hopeful, however, might be changes in the marketplace itself" as companies begin to use privacy policies to compete for customers and employees. Increasingly, businesses will find that protecting employee privacy is not only an attractive option for employees, but gives those employers with the strongest assurances a clear competitive advantage. just as customers will gravitate toward merchants who prove reliable and trustwortby in handling their data, so valued employees will be attracted to environments that promise to treat them with respect and reticence.
WE MUST AVOID HASTY LAWMAKING TO PROTECT PRIVACY
Suzanne Choney, The San Diego Union-Tribune, December 21, 1999, SECTION: COMPUTER LINK Pg. 2 TITLE: Open debate on privacy puts spotlight on risks // acs-EE2001
Jerry Berman, executive director of the Center for Democracy and Technology, based in Washington, D.C., cautioned against hasty law-making of any kind.
"There are three expectations of privacy people want on the Internet," he said. "One is the right to some anonymity, which we have when (we're in a bookstore) and open a book; two is communications (e-mail) privacy; three is, we want to know what information is being collected, what they're doing with it."
We want some choice as to whether the information is collected at all, he said, and if it's used, or traded in a way we don't approve of, we want a remedy, a way of making the situation right again.
After all, Berman said, "there are different consequences when your medical records are disclosed (without your approval) than a company like L.L. Bean having information" and using it for marketing purposes.
LEGISLATIVE PROTECTIONS FOR INDIVIDUAL PRIVACY ARE UNLIKELY TO SUCCEED
Kirkus Reviews, SEPTEMBER 1, 1999 AUTHOR: Sykes, Charles J. TITLE: THE END OF PRIVACY // acs-VT2001
What can we do? Sykes sensibly acknowledges that attempts to carve out legislative protections for individual privacy are unlikely to succeed. Rather, he recommends that we take a modest first step: begin by placing a higher premium on our own privacy.
LEGISLATIVE ATTEMPTS TO PROTECT PRIVACY ARE DOOMED TO FAILURE
THE ARIZONA REPUBLIC, May 16, 1999 SECTION: ARTS & IDEAS; Pg. E1 TITLE: GOODBYE, PRIVACY; IT'S DOOMED IN A WORLD AFTER FASTER, CHEAPER, SAFER STUFF // acs-EE2001
For a similar reason, attempts to protect privacy through new laws will fail - as they have done in the past.
Policing the proliferating number of databases and the thriving trade in information would not only be costly in itself; it would impose huge burdens on the economy.
Moreover, such laws are based on a novel concept: that individuals have a property right in information about themselves. Broadly enforced, such a property right would be antithetical to an open society.
It would pose a threat not only to commerce, but to a free press and to much political activity, to say nothing of everyday conversation.
It is more likely that laws will be used not to obstruct the recording and collection of information, but to catch those who use it to do harm.