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DATA-PROTECTION  2004

DATA-PROTECTION 2004

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Subject:

Re: Photographs

From:

Ian Welton <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Ian Welton <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 29 Jun 2004 17:51:14 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (120 lines)

Duncan Smith on 29 June 2004 at 10:40 said:-

> Do you believe that any new legislation will be incorporated 
> into the Data
> Protection Act 1998?

The DPA 1998 provides an illusion of privacy by attempting to form a
boundary around personal data restricting use to the original purpose it was
provided for by the data subject thereby facilitating some trust in the data
controllers.
From observation not unsurprisingly the DPA 1998 appears to be suffering
similar difficulties to the DPA 1984.
Other laws appear to be increasingly incorporating some form of sectorial
privacy type protectionist measures. (If privacy can legitimately be used in
that context - consider organisations and their  confidentiality
requirements.) e.g. FOI and security factors actually promote an awareness
of organisational/social group privacy requirements. 

Some argue that a positive law could not protect a natural right such as
privacy.
Others argue that in today's environment privacy no longer really exists and
positive laws are required if individual freedom is to survive.

From this latest ruling by the EUCHR back to Adam and Eve and the fig leaf,
and the early civilizations, privacy has been viewed as something important
in some way.  (Good or Bad dependant on the circumstances and perceivers
objectives at the time). 
Today 'privacy' is often (mis)used when defining the boundaries between
social groups as much as providing an area of freedom within diverse areas
which individuals may themselves manage.

I do not believe privacy will stop being perceived as necessary.  Quite how
effectively individuals are able to achieve it today has yet to be seen.

> Thought:  When a paparazzo takes a photograph(s) has he/she 
> breached the
> First principle (unfair obtaining) of personal data?  Do we 
> even need a
> 'new' law?

Surfing the internet could be likened to walking down the street; much
recorded and retained for posterity (each snapshot could be likened to a
photograph).  It would be easy to drown in so much material, mining it
merely sorts small pieces which may be interpreted as influenced by the
search engine algorithm, manipulation of search ratings, or wishes of the
perceiver. Not everyone has the skills of a historian, ethologist or
similar; today it is much more likely skills akin to a spin doctor will
exist. 

Obtaining and using material in line with DPA principles is frequently, like
respect for the person walking down the street, little considered and
probably not achievable in many circumstances. Those wishing to gain
legitimate privacy in public places could wear carnival masks, or on the
Internet use pseudo names. But I guess in the long term those would be seen
as politically unacceptable, and counter productive. But few other answers
are currently effective.

I interpret your second question as enquiring if the media exemptions should
be controlled?  Are they not already?

Your questions put together could be likened to asking if society wishes to
allow social groups to exist in an free and open environment, and what
controls should guide them and their members if they should.  I leave that
for others to answer who have greater knowledge in those particular areas
rather than try to answer them from a pure privacy perspective.


Ian W

> -----Original Message-----
> From: This list is for those interested in Data Protection 
> issues [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of 
> Duncan Smith
> Sent: 29 June 2004 10:40
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: Photographs
> 
> 
> Ian,
> 
> Do you believe that any new legislation will be incorporated 
> into the Data
> Protection Act 1998?
> 
> <The media lawyer Mark Stephens said yesterday's ruling would 
> give a boost
> to people who want a privacy law to be introduced in the 
> United Kingdom. At
> present no such law exists.
> 
> "It may well encourage people who are trying to grow a new privacy law
> here," Mr Stephens said.>
> 
> Thought:  When a paparazzo takes a photograph(s) has he/she 
> breached the
> First principle (unfair obtaining) of personal data?  Do we 
> even need a
> 'new' law?
> 
> 
> 
> Duncan S Smith
> 
> Managing Director
> iCompli Limited   Northampton  UK
> T: 08707 70 48 66  F: 08707 70 48 69  M: 07775 56 81 80
> Mailto:[log in to unmask]   Web: www.icompli.co.uk
> "Compliance in your language"

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