Do Users Read Privacy Policies? Answer Could Help Decide Wilkileaks/Twitter Case
For all that time, Web users still wouldn't necessarily be left with any better understanding of their privacy protections, because many policies are so filled with loopholes that they don't convey all that much useful information, according to a 2009 report out of UC Berkeley School of Information.
Given that so many people are pressed for time, and that reading privacy policies often is a wasted effort, it really shouldn't surprise anyone that many Web users don't attempt to wade through the legalese. Yet some judges continue to issue rulings premised on the fiction that Web users read -- and implicitly agree to -- sites' privacy policies.
In her ruling, U.S. District Court Judge Theresa Buchanan, in the Eastern District of Virginia, rejected a request by Twitter users, including Icelandic Parliament member Birgitta Jonsdottir, to vacate the government's order directing Twitter to turn over IP addresses and other information associated with their accounts. "Because petitioners voluntarily conveyed their IP addresses to Twitter as a condition of use, they have no legitimate Fourth Amendment privacy interest," Buchanan ruled.