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Re: Why privacy can't be left to chance (a response to RE: wording for the privacy section)

From: Doug Turner <doug.turner@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 2008 10:22:38 -0700
Cc: public-geolocation@w3.org
Message-Id: <26D2B7A7-25B6-454E-A271-534997AD5DDE@gmail.com>
To: Phil Archer <phil@philarcher.org>

Phil et. al,

We are all concerned.  It is wrong to suggest that we, or at least I,  
am unconcerned about privacy.

I doubt anyone is thinking about rolling out this API without the very  
strict protections for the user.  The assertion is that UAs will  
figure out what is best for their users.

I urge you to take a look at the implementations in firefox 3.0 w/ the  
Geode addon, or take a look at Firefox 3.1beta -- both have  
implemented this draft spec and have continued to protect the user's  
privacy -- without the need for GeoPriv or any other similarly complex  
addition to the spec.

Doug Turner
Mozilla Corporation

On Oct 31, 2008, at 9:48 AM, Phil Archer wrote:

> Hi,
> Much as I would like to be, I am sorry that I can't actively  
> participate in this group. But I have been alerted to the discussion  
> on privacy and its place in the group's thinking. Let me try this  
> approach:
> Many companies spend a lot of money on protecting their users.  
> Google offers safe search, for example, which works extremely well.  
> Vodafone is a world leader in online safety work (mainly through the  
> excellent Annie Mullins, head of Content Standards for Vodafone  
> Group).
> Why? Because it hurts their business if end users suffer abuse in  
> any way. Issues like cyber bullying, inappropriate content, illegal  
> content, viruses and so on all come down to one issue - brand  
> protection. So you can bet that any implementation of the GeoLoc WG  
> by Vodafone, or Google, or anyone else you've heard of, will be  
> sensitive to privacy. But, though it hurts them to hear it, Google  
> isn't the Internet, and Vodafone isn't the mobile space. There are  
> services that make a feature of their lack of safety.
> The world is full of vulnerable people. And vulnerable teenagers are  
> especially vulnerable. They may have had a poor education (so forget  
> safety messages like "don't give out your location to just anyone").  
> They may be suffering real physical abuse (typically from a step- 
> father) so forget "parents should always be able to know where I am"  
> for all cases. And even where they are not particularly vulnerable,  
> teenagers, of course, take risks (the world stops progressing the  
> day that isn't true!)
> Of course the API must force consideration of privacy. If developers  
> don't care about it - and Hixie is, of course, right that many won't  
> - well, they jolly well should. This is real people we're talking  
> about. Making it easy for an end user to advertise their location in  
> a way that can lead to a malicious person finding out where they are  
> is irresponsible and could seriously hurt the bottom line of  
> businesses that implement any such system.
> Please listen to John Morris. He's right to be very concerned.
> Phil Archer
> Latterly with the Family Online Safety Institute.
> Chair W3C POWDER WG.
> -- 
> Please note my new e-mail address. My ICRA/FOSI e-mail addresses  
> will not function after the end of November.
> Phil Archer
> e. phil@philarcher.org
> w. http://philarcher.org/
Received on Friday, 31 October 2008 17:23:53 UTC

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