From Publishers Weekly
When one surveys the myriad ways that personal information can be snatched from individuals through electronic means, its easy to feel gloomy about the prospects for privacy in the Information Agewhich is why this book is so refreshing. Although it sometimes reads like a legal briefauthor Solove (Information Privacy Law) is an associate law professor at George Washington University Law Schoolit offers insights into the current state of privacy in America and some intriguing prescriptions for altering that state of affairs. Contrary to popular notions that "Big Brother" is destroying privacy, Solove argues that the withering of privacy can, in large measure, be attributed to indifference. "The privacy problem created by the use of databases stems from an often careless and unconcerned bureaucratic process," he writes, "one that has little judgment or accountability.... We are not just heading toward a world of Big Brother, but to a world that is beginning to resemble Kafkas vision in The Trial." Solove contends that existing methods for protecting privacy fail to fulfill their purpose because they depend on individuals remedying situations that they dont even know exist. Soloves call for systematic change is compelling, as are his ideas for revamping societys information-gathering architecture. "Changing our relationships with bureaucracies cant be achieved through isolated lawsuits," he argues. "We need a regulatory system, akin to the ones we have in place regulating our food, environment, and financial institutions." Anyone concerned with preserving privacy against technologys growing intrusiveness will find this book enlightening.
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“Anyone concerned with preserving privacy against technology's growing intrusiveness will find this book enlightening.”
“Solove . . . truly understands the intersection of law and technology. This book is a fascinating journey into the almost surreal ways personal information is hoarded, used, and abused in the digital age.”
-The Wall Street Journal
“The Digital Person challenges the existing ways in which law and legal theory approach the social, political, and legal implications of the collection and use of personal information in computer databases. Solove’s book is ambitious, and represents the most important publication in the field of information privacy law for some years.”
-Georgetown Law Journal
“Solove ultimately is no ‘chicken little’ but an idealist of the best sort, concluding a positive role for law in the problem of privacy. Whether the world will leave Orwell and Kafka behind and evolve into Solove remains to be seen, but herein is offered a plan to achieve that objective.”
-Journal of Information Ethics
“This comprehensive analysis of privacy in the information age challenges traditional assumptions that breeches of privacy through the development of electronic dossiers involve the invasion of one’s private space.”
“Daniel Solove is one of the most energetic and creative scholars writing about privacy today. The Digital Person is an important contribution to the privacy debate, and Solove’s discussion of the harms of what he calls 'digital dossiers' is invaluable.”
-Jeffrey Rosen,author of The Unwanted Gaze
and The Naked Crowd
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