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Legal Scholars Ponder ‘Protecting Reader Privacy in Digital Books’

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Both Facebook Community Pages and Amazon Kindle’s most underlined passages have raised privacy concerns in the digital publishing community this month. Media Law Prof Blog linked to two academics who have tackled this thorny subject.

Jennifer Lynch from the Samuelson Law, Technology & Public Policy Clinic and Nicole Ozer from the ACLU of Northern California collaborated on a new paper, “Protecting Reader Privacy in Digital Books.” They presented the work at the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence Privacy 2010 Symposium.

Check it out: “as books move into digital form, new reader privacy issues are emerging. In stark contrast to libraries that retain as little information about readers as possible, digital book services are capturing detailed information about readers: who they are, what books they browse and read, and even how long a given page is viewed, and the notes written in the ‘margins.’ Without strong privacy protections, all of this browsing and reading history can be collected, analyzed, and may end up in the hands of the government or third parties without a reader’s knowledge or consent.” (Via Maud Newton)

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