CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

"Why Do We Care So Much About Privacy?"

From The New Yorker:

The Muzak case is not in Igo’s book, but plenty else is. She takes on telegraphy, telephony, instantaneous photography (snapshots), dactyloscopy (fingerprinting), Social Security numbers, suburbanization, the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory, Fourth Amendment jurisprudence, abortion rights, gay liberation, human-subject research, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, “60 Minutes,” Betty Ford, the 1973 PBS documentary “An American Family,” the Starr Report, the memoir craze, blogging, and social media. Igo is an intelligent interpreter of the facts, and her intelligence frequently leads her to the conclusion that “privacy” lacks any stable significance. Privacy is associated with liberty, but it is also associated with privilege (private roads and private sales), with confidentiality (private conversations), with nonconformity and dissent, with shame and embarrassment, with the deviant and the taboo (Igo does not go there), and with subterfuge and concealment.

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