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Digital Doublespeak on Privacy

“Privacy Policy” is one of the great oxymorons of the Digital Age. The term also speaks volumes about how the current corporate paradigm of data collection hides behind digital doublespeak.

Most privacy policies are nothing more than a legal fiction designed by lawyers to create an appearance of consent in order to allow mining of personal data for profit. Not only are these policies one-sided — subject to change at will by the corporations who use them — but they do little to protect the privacy of the public. Instead, they facilitate the dominant corporate paradigm of over collection and retention of personal data that, in turn, invites the litany of data breaches that dominate the news. Against the backdrop of events like the recent Yahoo data hack, most of these so-called “privacy policies” are a classic example of digital doublespeak.

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