Privacy for everybody
by RimaAlha on March 15, 2015 - 6:50pm
Several months ago, nude celebrity pictures spread across the internet without the consent of their owners. Their publication opened a debate about privacy and civil liberties. In fact, these images could be found on several websites such as Reddit and 4Chan. These social networks permit their users to police themselves and moderators are used to remove flagged content. However, these companies are blamed for their lack of action concerning unlawful publications. Everything having to do with privacy is talked about now, not only the episode of nude celebrity pictures. Robin William’s daughter has been attacked on Twitter after her father’s death and videos of journalists’ beheadings were uploaded on YouTube by ISIS. In the end, maybe YouTube, Twitter and others will be more proactive (Twitter has already tried some changes), but companies showed they cannot be counted on to be “arbiters of speech” reminded Jillian C. York, director at the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
A few years ago, the debate of privacy erupted all around the world. We started blaming the FBI and any other type of secret agency of spying on us. However, we now permit ourselves to invade the privacy of celebrities “because they are celebrities”, which denies them the right to have a personal life outside of work. I believe that hypocrisy is present in this problem and that their rights should be respected like we demand ours to be. Also, the uploaded beheadings of journalists by ISIS and their sharing across the Internet should make us question our own values. Voyeurism, judgment and criticism are encouraged on websites such as Twitter and YouTube. Moderators should, in my opinion, always delete contents if someone’s privacy is not respected. Actually, as Mr. Jillian C. Work said, companies cannot be trusted: more reinforced laws should be put in place to avoid scandals.
We can personally help in many ways. EPIC (electronic privacy information center) is an independent non-profit research center working to “protect privacy, freedom of expression, democratic values, and to promote the Public Voice in decisions concerning the future of the Internet” (https://epic.org/epic/about.html). They have multiple events to inform people about the issue they are defending and to attract them to join the cause. A conference presently happening (March 12-13th) is “Surveillance, Privacy and Transnational Relations in the Digital Era” in Belgium. To support EPIC, one can give money on their websites. Donations helps to maintain the website, publish books, train law students about privacy, organize privacy campaigns, etc.
Isaac, Mike. "Nude Photos of Jennifer Lawrence Are Latest Front in Online Privacy Debate." The New York Times. The New York Times, 2 Sept. 2014. Web. 13 Mar. 2015. <http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/03/technology/trove-of-nude-photos-sparks....