Zero Privacy, Apple Apps, and Other URGENT News

From ABA Journal:

Puerto Rico Federal Case Alleges that Apple, Apps, Invade Privacy

Last week, two women filed a federal complaint against Apple and various apps developers, accusing them of intentionally seeking users’ private smartphone information and sharing it with third-party advertisers.

The suit, which seeks class-action status, was filed April 7 in the District of Puerto Rico. According to Wired's Gadget Lab blog, plaintiffs Natasha Acosta and Dolma Acevedo-Crespo argue that the allegation, involving both iPhone or iPad apps, violates the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. According to the complaint (PDF), apps that engage in the alleged behavior include Dictionary.com and Pandora, a media player.

According to Gadget Lab, iPhones don’t transmit customers’ names, but information can be identified by a string of unique numbers, known as the “unique device identifier.”

That information, combined with location, age and gender data, could easily show someones real identity, says John Nevares, a San Juan lawyer who represents the plaintiffs.

“When you put those together they’re able to transfer to a third party all your personal information so they can contact you later on and try to sell you something,” Nevares said.

This just in, we're getting reports from some crazy scientists that the North Pole, despite popular opinion, is actually still pretty frikkin cold. That and we have a first-hand account of one woman's visit to Hell, and she states emphatically that it is still crazy hot. Wow, all shocking news.

I was just telling my brother about this. We are being monitored a lot more than you'd like to know. And it's probably best that most people remain blind to their lack of privacy. It's bound to make a lot of people angry. After thinking about it some, It occurred to me it's just like digital content ownership.

Just like content it's not a totally unequal relationship, since demand for free content is so high (typical of a commidity, or abundant economy), it leaves some companies with little choice. They're extracting value out of the hooks they have, which is usually giving away content for free. So we are sort of asking for it. I'm just saying. This is what you get for the "it just works" experience.

Don't get me wrong, I'm one of the few people bad mouthing Apple these days. What do you expect from a platform owned and controlled by one company? You know what they always say ... What happens in the garden stays in the garden.

Photo Courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons: Wagner Machado Carlos Lemes