"Tracking" or "finger printing" should be prohibited unless explicitedly authorized. An "opt-out" feature should be available at anytime! Personal information, whether it's information about your computer's "fingerprint" or otherwise, is private. Any attempt to gather personal information without explicit authorization should be illegal! You can't wiretape without a warrant which requires some modicom of proof of a an illegal act. Your mail can't be opened and searched. That's illegal. You can't break into someone's home without committing a crime. Census worker can't take your personal information without your permission. A survey taker can't ask you about your buying habits without asking you for it and you volunterially giving to him. How did we get to the point where a "cookie," "malware," "spyware," and "finger printing" became acceptable and "legal" It is unconscionable! Perhaps we should look back to see how telephone companies started publishing names, telephone numbers, and addresses then selling that information. When people signed up for a telephone number did they give the telephone companies permission to sell their information Not. I use Microsoft's Internet Explore 8.0 browser and the "In-Private" browsing and filtering. I read the WSJ "What They Know" article featuring Microsoft's internal debate about "tracking" and how to handle it in IE 8.0. Very interesting stuff. The article makes it clear that software manufacturers and internet website providers have big stakes in "tracking." Don't expect them to do anything that jeopardizes sales. Doing the "right thing" for consumer privacy seems beyond them. User Agreements are extortion: pay up with your personal, private information (and money too, in some cases) or you can't use their product or service. That's wrong! I "pay" for TV viewing by watching advertisements but I don't have give up my personal information too. Nielson pays viewers for information about their viewing habits. Why don't software companies and website providers Obviously, my personal information has great value to advertisers. If I want to sell it, pay me for it! Otherwise, ask me to pay for the service that I want to use such as Google, MSN, YouTube, FaceBook, etc. If such services can't survive then they aren't providing a service that people value. My personal opinion, if most charged for their services, they would disappear quickly. Where are ethics Isn't it wrong to steal And, make money at it too Why should they make a profit off information that cost them nothing to obtain I wish I had that kind of business!!! Okay, I think you get my points and my feeling about this "hot topic." I can understand advertisers desires for this information but they should not be allowed to have it unless I explicitedly authorize it. Thanks for listening. Myers
A Preliminary FTC Staff Report on "Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change: A Proposed Framework for Businesses and Policymakers" #00124
A Preliminary FTC Staff Report on "Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change: A Proposed Framework for Businesses and Policymakers"