Will Canada take Facebook to court?
It will be interesting to see what happens this week, and especially Monday now that the 30 grace period Canada's privacy commissioner gave to Facebook to clear up it's privacy issues has expired.
This is a very long tale that started last May when the privacy commissioner began an investigation after receiving a few complaints but one in particular. Facebook has always had "issues" surrounding privacy related issues, and as I pointed out last year I think they seem to have a corporate culture of finding the fine line by crossing over and letting user outrage push them back. It's happened again and again so it really seems that is the case.
Regardless they certainly have privacy issues and sure enough the findings of the privacy commissioner found no less than 12 violations of Canadian law relating to privacy on Facebook. After the findings were made public the commissioner gave Facebook 30 days to address the issues or face further sanctions/steps.
The 30 days are up and zero has been done.
If the privacy commissioner has any power, and is to be respected in the slightest, they really need to move quickly now to (a) force Facebook into changes and (b) punish via fines Facebook for the inaction. I really think they need to do both because while I am all for social networking I am also acutely aware that privacy is not just an issue but a real problem. Far too many companies take privacy issues only as an afterthought, and the results are plain to see. Facebook is a large entity and a well known privacy abuser, if they "get away with it" then it doesn't inspire other companies to review and update their stance on privacy issues, and to me that's more what this is about.
We'll see what happens.
|© 2008 Max Stocker|