Having an interesting discussion with a friend about issues surrounding online privacy and corporate tracking of customers. At issue is whether some forms of customer tracking are acceptable, or none. If a company you like and have done business with in the past sends you an email, do you expect that clicking links in that email will report that you, Jane Doe, responded to an email campaign, visited the such and such pages, and bought such and such products? (Keep in mind that this is not spam, but an email newsletter you really did sign up for). If you didn’t know you were being tracked, would it bother you to find out that you were? What about non-personal, generic stats tracking, which just gathers average results to see what people do and don’t like? What if you found out that the company’s services could become much more valuable to you if they could gather personal usage data on your surfing and buying habits? How valuable is your personal privacy? For which kinds of rewards would you be willing to give it up? How clear should a company be that they’re tracking you? Is the fine print in the EULA or TOS sufficient, or should tracking notices be posted in boldface on the page where you sign up? Can privacy lost ever be regained?
Music: Neil Young :: Loose Change