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OPLIN 4Cast #803: Data privacy is a bathroom door

Posted in privacy

Last updated on May 16, 2022

One of the best explanations of privacy I’ve ever heard goes something like this:

You may say that you don’t care about privacy but, assuredly, you do. If you close the door when you go to the bathroom, you absolutely do care. Even though people have a pretty good idea of what typically happens behind a closed bathroom door, that doesn’t mean we want people to see it. That’s privacy: the closed bathroom door. The misunderstandings start when people confuse privacy with secrecy. There’s a lot that we do online that we don’t necessarily want to keep secret, but we don’t want people to see us while we’re doing it.

Often, online, keeping the bathroom door closed isn’t even an option, and it’s making many people increasingly uncomfortable. As well it should.

  • Some top 100,000 websites collect everything you type—before you hit submit [Ars Technica] “Nothing actually happens until you hit the Submit button, right? Well, maybe not. As with so many assumptions about the web, this isn’t always the case, according to new research: A surprising number of websites are collecting some or all of your data as you type it into a digital form.”
  • Google still doesn’t understand what privacy means [Android Authority] “At I/O 2022, Google unveiled its latest solution to appease the more privacy-conscious — the dystopianly named My Ad Center. In the not too distant future, Google users will have a swanky new UI and features they can navigate to customize their ad experience. Only “Big G” could think that anyone wants to waste precious minutes of their life managing which of the “brands you love” can track which bits of their data.”
  • Why Privacy Is “The Most Essential Battle Of Our Time” [Forbes] “Privacy as a fundamental right may seem obvious, but it hardly speaks to the reality. The right to privacy is not inherent in our legislation, particularly in the US, and it became abundantly clear just how far the US is falling behind throughout the sessions at #GPS22. “
  • Facebook Doesn’t Know What It Does With Your Data, Or Where It Goes: Leaked Document [Vice] ““We do not have an adequate level of control and explainability over how our systems use data, and thus we can’t confidently make controlled policy changes or external commitments such as ‘we will not use X data for Y purpose.’ And yet, this is exactly what regulators expect us to do, increasing our risk of mistakes and misrepresentation,” the document read.”

From the Ohio Web Library: