This is a very old article. It has been imported from older blogging software, and the formatting, images, etc may have been lost. Some links may be broken. Some of the information may no longer be correct. Opinions expressed in this article may no longer be held.

Els despairs about some high-profile privacy and data protection gaffs in 2007 and asks can we still get some privacy in 2008?. Her use of the word “get” rather than “retain” is very telling — it’s not just a matter of retaining our current level of privacy, but of trying to claw back what we’ve already lost.

And it seems that privacy is one of those assets which is even harder to win back than it is to keep hold of in the first place. It’s pretty easy to, say, end up on some spam mailing list, but just you try getting your e-mail address off. Off all of them. Because once that information’s out there, it’s out there for good. Information wants to be free. But it works both ways you know.