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Monday, 29 September 2014

Tim Berners-Lee has some points about privacy - Module 1- any comments?

Hitting the news stand again - looking at security and privacy on the web - I wonder if a bio of rights would work?


  1. I don't know *how* it would work - I think there's a conflict between having freedom of the web and control over our privacy: in many ways freedom to one person is censorship to another, as in the case of the 'right to be forgotten': on the one hand yes, it is fair that if something potentially damaging about us is in the public domain then we should have the right to have it taken down, but on the other hand does the general public have the right to access this information?
    It's a tricky subject and relies on all users of the internet voluntarily adhering to a set of codes of conduct which, as we all know, does not happen!

  2. Yes the 'public domain' is not necessarily easy to define in today's complex web environment. There are issues about data protection but the sharing of know led is also coming back to academia in the form of open access where research is expected to be available to those who have paid for it through taxes! I think some voluntary codes might be said to work (are they linked to Media codes?)- companies might need to take down illegal sites - but again the issue of privacy might need to be better defined - is there a global definition or do national laws come into play?

  3. Thanks for this Dani - yes there could be a question about the 'public domain' and what theta mean globally? Also the idea of voluntary privacy rules - like the Media - they have worked after a fashion but might not be fit for purpose as the web expands even further... what are the legal - moral - implications?

  4. This is a tricky and complicated topic. On the one hand everyone is entitled to their privacy, that's why we all live behind locked front doors. However if what people are doing behind those doors is then effecting the life of someone else, is it fair for them to be unknown?? Such as the case that was in the news yesterday about the McCanns and the twitter troll, who was abusing them day after day on the site. She didn't use her real name so that no one would know who she was, but was later found out and confronted about it. Her reply was that she had every right to voice her opinions, but should she be allowed to do this without acknowledging who she was? I personally think it was extremely cowardly. When found out she sadly took her own life, but who's to say that through the abuse she gave, one of the McCann's might have taken the same end? Would she have been reprimanded for causing the death?