January 28, 2010 is Data Privacy Day:
Data Privacy Day is an international celebration of the dignity of the individual expressed through personal information. In this networked world, in which we are thoroughly digitized, with our identities, locations, actions, purchases, associations, movements, and histories stored as so many bits and bytes, we have to ask – who is collecting all of this – what are they doing with it – with whom are they sharing it? Most of all, individuals are asking ‘How can I protect my information from being misused?’ These are reasonable questions to ask – we should all want to know the answers.
To celebrate, I’ve taken some steps to make MichaelZimmer.org even more privacy-friendly:
- I have replaced the commonly used ShareThis widget with Sociable. Both allow readers to easily post and share stories from my blog to various social networking sites, but Sociable does it without the use of web cookies or web bugs. Sociable simply automatically creates the necessary links, that’s it. No one is tracking what you decide to share, or where you do it.
You can validate these changes by installing the Ghostery Firefox extension, which alerts you about the web bugs, ad networks and widgets on every page you visit. Nothing should appear when you visit MichaelZimmer.org, but you’ll be amazed to learn how other sites & advertisers are tracking users.
Enjoy Data Privacy Day, and let me know what you’re doing to get involved.