[MyData & Open Data] MyData-Open-Data Digest, Vol 6, Issue 2

Javier Ruiz javier at openrightsgroup.org
Wed Jul 3 15:59:04 UTC 2013

> It is hard to get away from the issue of "context" and the dynamic nature of context when talking about privacy.  I am happy to expose "mydata" in some contexts but not in others.  For me one of the most illustrative examples of the complexity of open data and privacy is the gun mapping drama that happened in the wake of the Newtown shooting.  Patrick Meier has a great analysis of it at http://irevolution.net/2013/01/23/perils-of-crisis-mapping/  
> In this case, the right to 'opt out' of being mapped seems like a reasonable thing even though it is public data.  

Location data is a case apart and worth deserving its own category. In European law there is a specific obligation to allow for the withdrawal of consent to the processing of location data. 


On it being public data:

. In this context, it is important to note that any information relating to an identified or 
identifiable natural person, be it publicly available or not, constitutes personal data. 
Moreover, the mere fact that such data has been made publicly available does not lead 
to an exemption from data protection law. The reuse of personal data made publicly 
available by the public sector, thus remains subject in principle to the relevant data 
protection law.8


This possibly means that even if you publish your own data you may need to set out some extra guidelines telling people what they can do. Third parties cannot assume that just because you make it public it's ok to do whatever they want.

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