- [Air-l] Google is watching !

Charles Ess cmess at drury.edu
Fri May 21 09:28:56 PDT 2004

Forgive the brevity -

I don't see immediately how restating this point with an appeal to the UN
Covenent provides clarification, development, further answer, etc., to the
critiques and questions I raised in response to your first version of this
point (see my posting, 5/9/04).
It would be very helpful if you could point out how the appeal to the UN
covenant provides response, clarification, etc., to those critiques and

Charles Ess
Distinguished Research Professor, Interdisciplinary Studies
Drury University
900 N. Benton Ave.                          Voice: 417-873-7230
Springfield, MO  65802  USA            FAX: 417-873-7435

Home page:  http://www.drury.edu/ess/ess.html
Co-chair, CATaC: http://www.it.murdoch.edu.au/catac/

Exemplary persons seek harmony, not sameness. -- Analects 13.23

> From: ET <et at tarik.com.au>
> Reply-To: air-l at aoir.org
> Date: Fri, 21 May 2004 18:53:47 +0930
> To: air-l at aoir.org
> Subject: re:- [Air-l] Google is watching !
> Charles wrote...
> "1. A central point is what people's expectations are - whether justified or
> not.  It seems clear that people frequently expect privacy, both in (a)
> contexts in which such expectations  are, from an informed perspective,
> unrealistic and (b) contexts which even if originally comparatively private,
> become in various ways more public  (e.g., USENET postings that were later
> published, etc.)"
> I know you are very busy Charles, but I cant let this one slip by unattended
> :-)
> I have thought long and hard about this, and I wish to sum up my stance by
> referring to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights...
> [ICOCPR]Article 17 -
> 1.  No one shall be subjected to arbitrary or unlawful interference with his
> privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to unlawful attacks on his honour
> and reputation.
> 2. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such
> interference or attacks.
> [ET]In law, a court would consider the issue of "legitimate expectations" and
> question from where such expectations arise.
> Clearly from this human rights document there is a legitimate expectation for
> ones privacy to be respected within the boundaries of the law.
> There is nothing in this document that would suggest one has a right to enjoy
> a right to privacy greater than this.
> And, we must also consider the rights of the researcher citizen, which are
> outlined below...
> [ICOCPR]Article 19 -
> 1. Everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference.
> 2. Everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall
> include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all
> kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the
> form of art, or through any other media of his choice.
> 3. The exercise of the rights provided for in paragraph 2 of this article
> carries with it special duties and responsibilities. It may therefore be
> subject to certain restrictions, but these shall only be such as are provided
> by law and are necessary:
> 1. For respect of the rights or reputations of others;
> 2. For the protection of national security or of public order (ordre public),
> or of public health or morals.
> [ET]Surely, as long as I respect the rights of my fellow citizens under
> article 17, I am free to enjoy my rights under article 19  - i.e. my right to
> seek, receive and impart information and ideas...through the media of my
> choice - and i would consider this to mean my right to legally research people
> and data.
> This leaves me with an important question and ethical dilemma - from where do
> others gain the right to attempt to limit my rights under Article 19?
> [ICOCPR]Article 5
> 1. Nothing in the present Covenant may be interpreted as implying for any
> State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or perform any act
> aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms recognized herein
> or at their limitation to a greater extent than is provided for in the present
> Covenant.  
> [ET] So, if I understand correctly, this means that no group of people,
> however well meaning, or individual (who may have excessive expectations of
> privacy), has the right to limit my rights under Article 19 to a greater
> extent than is provided for in the Covenant - and that extent is  the
> limitation provided by law. It would appear nobody has the right to limit my
> right to lawful research, ethical or otherwise.
> an interesting topic indeed.
> regards,
> Eero Tarik
> Adelaide
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