All posts in tag: privacy

Michael Eisen With its HeLa genome agreement, NIH embraces an expansive definition of familial consent in genetics

I wrote before about the controversy involving the release earlier this year of a genome sequence of the HeLa cell line, which was taken without consent from Henrietta Lacks as she lay dying of ovarian cancer in 1950s Baltimore.

Now, the NIH has announced an agreement with Lacks’ descendants to obtain … More >

Chris Hoofnagle Is Google reading your bMail?

Both users of bMail and the campus itself have never received a clear answer to a simple question: Is Google subjecting data in Google Apps for Education to data analysis or mining for purposes unnecessary for technical rendition of service?

A recently-filed lawsuit suggests that Google is indeed applying analysis to … More >

Chris Hoofnagle The good, not so good, and long view on Bmail

Many campuses have decided to outsource email and other services to “cloud” providers.  Berkeley has joined in by migrating student and faculty to bMail, operated by Google.  In doing so, it has raised some anxiety about privacy and autonomy in communications.  In this post, I outline some advantages of our … More >

Babak Siavoshy The California Supreme Court pits privacy against credit-card security. But did it have to?

For twenty years now, the Song-Beverly Credit-Card Act has been quietly protecting Californians’ personal information — including home address and telephone numbers — from retailers who want to collect and store it for their own use.  Last week the California Supreme Court, in a divided ruling (Apple v. Superior Court … More >

Camille Crittenden The Internet and global justice 2.0

Recent developments in technology — and a UN Human Rights Council Resolution — highlight the growing potential of social media’s role in international justice. Tools for citizens to report or document serious crimes are increasingly available and easy for non-specialists to deploy. The seminal crowdsourcing platform Ushahidi, created during the … More >

Claude Fischer Stumbling in the dark

I recently turned to one of the central sources of information about social trends in America, The Statistical Abstract of the United States, described on its web page as “since 1878, the authoritative and comprehensive summary of statistics on the social, political, and economic organization of the United States.” Also … More >

Chris Hoofnagle My zip code is none of your business!

The California Supreme Court held today in Pineda v. Williams Sonoma that a zip code is personal information, meaning that California retailers who ask for it when you pay with a credit card violate the State’s Song-Beverly Act of 1971. That law prohibits retailers from:

Request[ing]…the cardholder to write any … More >

Chris Hoofnagle Free: The dismal deal

The Journal recently reported that popular social networking site Ning is ending their free account services. Rumors are circulating that major newspapers, including the New York Times, are going to erect a pay-wall. These developments have not deterred the “free” evangelists.

For instance, in Chris Anderson’s provocative new book, … More >

Chris Hoofnagle Our Products, Ourselves

If you’ve ever wrestled with Guy Debord’s Society of the Spectacle, there is good news for you: MTV and VH1′s market research group has produced a cheat sheet. It describes “Gen Mix,” a group of young people who have confused products with personality and exist to buy stuff from … More >

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