Privacy in Europe and the United States: I Know It When I See It | Center for Democracy & Technology

by Omer Tene, Center for Democracy and Technology Website, June 27, 2011

This post is part of “CDT Fellows Focus,” a series that presents the views of notable experts on tech policy issues. This week, CDT Fellow Omer Tene is our guest contributor. Posts featured in “CDT Fellows Focus” don’t necessarily reflect the views of CDT; the goal of the series is to present diverse, well-informed views on significant tech policy issues.

There is a great deal of cross-Atlantic harmony with respect to fundamental legal concepts. A contract is a contract in both the United States and France; it is formed by offer and acceptance, and awards specific performance or damages upon breach. Likewise, a tort is a breach of a civil duty; and a corporation a distinct legal entity. Yet when it comes to privacy, the cross-Atlantic harmony breaks down. While the psychological need for and social value of privacy are universal, legal and societal privacy norms diverge to the extent that we must ask whether we are speaking about the same thing. …

For full text of the article visit Privacy in Europe and the United States: I Know It When I See It | Center for Democracy & Technology.

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