A National Priority of Clear Notice
… there is no way we should do business with companies that have agreements with stealth provisions and that aren't intelligible. So how are we going to change the world? Make clarity, transparency, and simplicity a national priority.
A year and a half ago, Alan Siegel described in less than 5 minutes why the problems of privacy and consumer trust run rampant on the Internet. That legalese that every website presents you doesn't actually inform you of anything. It is a tool of websites to obtain legal authorizations and protection.
Privacy policies were not meant to be used this way. The FTC originally promoted privacy policies as a tool for informing consumers of the benefits and risks of using websites. Over the years they have evolved into dense blocks of text that are not only useless to consumers, they are harmful to consumers.
Why aren't clear notices a national priority? Siegel thinks they should be. The FTC has stated again and again that consumer notices should be clear and easy to understand. Unfortunately, industry self-regulation bodies and Congress don't seem to be as interested in presenting consumers with clear and transparent information.
Why aren't clear notices a national priority? I think we should ask the DMA's Consumer, Ethics, and Privacy department, or IAB President Randall Rothenberg. More importantly, we should ask that question to our Representatives and Senators. We might also want to ask, why is it OK for businesses to trick consumers? Why aren't consumers treated with respect by our businesses and our government?