“It is easy to forget that prior to 9/11 privacy rights were on the march. Plans were in the works, in the areas of legislation and regulation, to protect personal privacy from both governmental intrusion and corporate penetration.”

With a new book on eroding privacy protections it’s unfortunate the book focusing on stats only  apparently is a colossal bore. Planned or just poor design? Such an important topic, especially when you read the dust jacket quotes (below) deserves far better, especially with that powerful statement that “plans were in the works” for even better protections only to be swept aside.

As one reviewer phrased it:

“…Despite (or perhaps because of) encyclopedic descriptions of virtually every privacy-related law in the world, on a country-by-country basis, The War on Privacy is easily the most boring book I’ve read this year–and I make a living reading boring books. The author seems to have put so much effort into researching the minutia of various laws that she lost sight of the bigger picture–the effects that government invasions of privacy have on real people and on society as a whole.”

Book Dust Jacket Summary:

In today’s globalized society, the war on terror has negatively affected privacy rights not just in the United States, but everywhere. When privacy rights are curtailed around the world, American efforts to spread freedom and democracy are hindered, and as a consequence, Americans are less secure in the world. Ironically, the erosion of individual privacy rights, here and abroad, has been happening in the name of enhancing national security.

This book sheds light on this apparent contradiction and argues that governments must do more to preserve privacy rights while endeavoring to protect their citizens against future terror attacks.

It is easy to forget that prior to 9/11 privacy rights were on the march. Plans were in the works, in the areas of legislation and regulation, to protect personal privacy from both governmental intrusion and corporate penetration. The need for such protections arose from the swift advances in information technology of the 1990s. But the attacks of 9/11, and the responses of governments to this new level of terrorist threat, put an end to all that.

Not only is privacy no longer emphasized in legislation, it is being eroded steadily, raising significant questions about the handling of personal information, surveillance, and other invasions into the private lives of ordinary citizens.

Full book review here: http://readingforsanity.blogspot.com/2010/01/war-on-privacy-jacqueline-klosek.html

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