The ability to know everything about everybody has been a constant theme of humanity. Literature, religion are full of those stories where people wish or try to be omnipotent by knowledge of past, present and if possible future. The outcomes are usually disastrous and the moral of the story tends to be that being human is also about being respected in one’s privacy.
Not to have data harvested should be right. Mr Berners-Lee’s comments go far beyond the UK bill. It is not so much about the Government not being able to earsdrop, but about corporations that should not decide, for us, what they do with our data and whether they should, at all, collect that data. The technology allows us to harness information that we always dreamt to collect but could not. Now that we can, where do we stop? and where do we start?We can’t forget our rights, human rights, just because of fear of crime. Actually, the core principles of criminal law developed hand in hand with our core values. We should not try to separate them.
“Tim Berners-Lee Says UK’s Net Spying Plans Would Be ‘Destruction Of Human Rights‘”, TechDirt, 20 April 2012
For some echo (anticipation rather) of his ideas: the US consumer bill of rights “Could A Consumer Privacy Bill Of Rights Even Work?” Masnick, TechDirt 23 February 2012