Data Privacy & Cookies

The ‘Right to be forgotten’ online is extremely important for future society. As it would allow for a procedure to take down information that can be incriminating or have other unforeseen negative consequences, especially in the long-term. This is rather controversial, as it can be misused to censor freedom of speech. However, ‘right to be forgotten’ should be ensured for personal reasons, and it can work without undermining human rights. The Internet does not forget, content posted online can be accessed globally by 7 billion people, and subsequent generations of offspring from those 7 billion people. It gets worse, then other people can easily post information about you, or even blackmail a person. Blackmailing incidents have recently increased, as many young girls find themselves victims of blackmail & harassment over pictures that often their ex-boyfriend threatened to release. Procedure to allow take-down for personal content should be available, but only after careful study and consideration of the content, to prohibit censoring freedom of speech. This would also go some way in helping situation of child safety online, as the procedure would allow a legal way to take down child pornographic content. However, education of young people from primary school should be prioritised. I listened to my family then was told not to take sweets from strangers, not to send naked pictures of oneself to strangers should be the same. And, if you do manage to get in this sort of a mess, data protection authorities should be able to differentiate between naked pictures of you and a political statement against authoritarian government.

Consent to cookies is a step in the right direction to making sure that Internet users are aware that their actions online are being followed and stored. Cookies are a non-monetary payment for an Internet services that people enjoy mostly for free. Advertising is already paying for people’s use of music, videos on such channels as youtube. Facebook and googles’ multi-billion dollar business models are build on main idea that profit and company value will come from the advertising revenue. The Internet allows for a possibility to target individual users, therefore the chances of offering you’r product to the person who actually needs it, greatly increase with the use of cookies on the net. However, there are many controversial issues surrounding this, especially than race and religion is introduced into the cookie dough formula. But, few can object to getting the right solution to their problem, when one actually requires it.

The day of advertising on TV 1.0, for example baby pampers, to people that don’t have children and don’t require pampers was part of the 20th century. Internet allows advertising that is tailored to each individual person, even if the media content is the same. There are issues that regulators require to deal with, especially such cases like the rumour I heard that apparently those using apple macbooks can get quoted higher prices online, in my opinion this is an awful price discrimination and should be prohibited.

There are talks & even projects to replace cookies, but for now we have to deal with them. Even the name given to something that collects information about the Internet user is interesting, its the ‘cookies’ that you get in return, instead of charging money to browse the internet site. ‘Cookies’ are often very helpful for remembering your previous preferences, thus saving you a lot of time. It allows this 21st century unique product, instead of generalised media, reduced to the lowest common denominator to appeal to the masses. However, once we enter into the realm of zombie cookies, it starts to get objectionable. Because once I click delete cookies on my Internet browser, I expect it to be deleted. But zombie cookies just renew themselves and keep adding information about you, to already long list of data. On such preferences as food, hobbies and all kinds of psychological life-choices that come to your head to browse on the Internet. US already had a lawsuit regarding such objects, while EU still has to encounter its cookie zombie…

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