Privacy concerns raised at Connecting Up 09 conference

After a heated discussion about privacy at the Connecting Up conference, I headed off to the Apple Store to get a replacement power adapter. I’d left my one behind on the kitchen bench.

When I handed over my credit card to the young salesman he blithely asked if I’d like the receipt emailed to my commonknowledge account, or would I like a printed version. Or both.

What! I was astounded someone I didn’t know, in a shop I’d never been to had this sort of information. It transpires somewhere along the lines when I’d signed up to Apple’s iTunes store I must have agreed to this. And iTunes is linked into Apple’s corporate computer system, and someone somewhere is datamining all my (very small number of) purchases.

Obviously, I didn’t read the fine-print. And do I trust Apple with this confidential information? Must go and read their privacy policy.

The session on privacy, led by Californian resident Allen Gunner from Aspiration, showed that people working in community and voluntary sector organisations have strong views on privacy. And high ideals. Gunner used a participatory ‘crowdsourcing’ exercise to draw out opinions. It was great to see 200 odd people placing themselves on a continuum of agreement/ disagreement with his provocative statements.

I need more time to reflect on the substance of conference and have conversations with other participants, which I’ll write about later. You can get a sense of what’s happening by looking at the collectively written twitter feed, or the live video feed on the conference website.

On a lighter note, here are some pics of my trip to Sydney. I’ll be adding more during the next day or two.

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