Posted in

The Social Stuff

Putting Google Glass on Ann Landers

By Jedidiah Bracy, CIPP/US, CIPP/E

5-4. No, that’s not the vote count in a partisan Supreme Court decision or the score of a Major League Baseball Spring Training game.

It’s the number of “Dos” versus “Don’ts” on Google’s recently published blog post on the public implementation of the always-controversial Google Glass.

If you’re a Glass user, you might want to read it so you don’t get attacked…

More from Jedidiah Bracy

Big Data

Data-Driven Dating: How Data Are Shaping Our Most Intimate Personal Relationships

When we talk about Big Data, we mostly refer to large-scale conglomerations of information about our collective behavior, aggregated by governments and big corporations. But there’s another way data have become big: Our interpersonal connections are being infiltrated by data to an unprecedented degree, changing how we relate to one another. A focus on everyday data-collection practices reveals that we are active participants in gathering, interpreting and deploying data—not just passive data points about whom data is collected and aggregated.

Nothing makes the rise of the data mentality clearer than the proliferation of tools for creating and using data in budding romantic relationships.

More from Karen Levy

Privacy Art

Sending a Message Through Privacy Art

By Jedidiah Bracy, CIPP/US, CIPP/E
NYT Word Frequency, by Jer Thorpe

In one of Portlandia’s early episodes, “Bryce Shivers” and “Lisa Eversman” reveal how they spruce things up and make them pretty by putting birds on them. They even put a bird on a bird and get more than they bargained for when an actual bird makes an appearance—giving new meaning to deconstruction.

The clip reminded me of the protean definition of art. Is wrapping a building in cloth art? Put some cloth on it! Well, to some, yes. So without going into the classic, “what is art?” tangent, let’s just say that art means different things to different folks.

Which brings me to LinkedIn passwords.

More from Jedidiah Bracy

Opinion

Vint Cerf is Wrong. Privacy Is Not An Anomaly

Google Chief Internet Evangelist Vint Cerf

“Privacy may actually be an anomaly,” said Vint Cerf, one of the architects of the Internet, at an FTC workshop on the Internet of Things on Tuesday. Cerf, who’s currently Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist, argued that privacy is a construct of the modern industrial age. In the past, his thinking goes, people lived in small self-contained villages, where pretty much everyone knew who was dating the baker’s daughter and what the sheriff had for lunch. It is only when populations started migrating en masse to cities that anonymity emerged as a byproduct of urbanization.

The view of privacy as an anomaly is not new, particularly among Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, who time and again express a cavalier approach to what is a fundamental, deep-rooted social, moral and legal value. It is however wrong, and may lead businesses and governments astray in making weighty policy choices.

More from Omer Tene

Opinion

Is the U.S. About To Get Its First European-Style Employee Works Council?

By Allen Brandt, CIPP/US, CIPP/E, CIPM

A recent article in The New York Times noted that every one of Volkswagen’s (VW) manufacturing plants in the world has an employee works council except one: the VW plant in Chattanooga, TN. Works councils are popular in VW’s home country of Germany and created by a directive in the European Union. This directive mandates employees have a voice in working with management about working conditions in their environment.

U.S. chief privacy officers (CPOs) and their European counterparts—data protection officers (DPOs)—often work with works councils in many areas but especially in protecting employee privacy. In fact, German DPOs and their corporate works councils have a reputation for being strong defenders in protecting privacy rights. Want to monitor e-mail or social media in the workplace? Centralize your HR records in the U.S.? Or ready to add a whistleblower hotline? The German Works Council Act, for example, empowers the works council to agree or refuse consent of many employee-monitoring devices. All of these require consultation in advance of the organization’s works council, and you can expect to hear a strong statement in support of protecting privacy rights!

More from Allen Brandt

Trending

I Don’t Know Which Will Go First—Rock ‘n Roll or Privacy

By Jedidiah Bracy, CIPP/US, CIPP/E

In an otherwise rambling, drunken session at Elektra Studios in 1969, the Doors recorded a blues-backed jam called “Rock is Dead.” Jim Morrison’s Nietzsche-influenced rant on rock’s death has been repeated by other musicians, reviewers and record store employees countless times. Punk is dead. Grunge is dead. Hip hop? Yeah, that too.

But the phrase is not particular to the modern music tradition.

More from Jedidiah Bracy

Opinion

Parallel Privacy Universes and PRISM

The U.S. and Europe seem locked in their own separate, parallel universes in the way they view PRISM and other recent revelations concerning law enforcement data access, as demonstrated by differences in transatlantic media coverage.

Here in Europe, discussion of law enforcement surveillance of electronic communications has dominated the major news media for the last few weeks. By contrast,...

More from Christopher Kuner