Wednesday 25 May 2022
Area 42 Grand
Interdisciplinary Hub for Digitalisation and Society (iHub), Radboud University Nijmegen (NL)

Panel Description

When it comes to digital harms, privacy and data protection concerns have come to dominate public debate and regulation. While useful early on in the stride against the new power asymmetries of the digital era, the focus on privacy and data protection is currently engendering detrimental effects. Amongst others, the hegemony of the value of privacy may crowd out other values that are no less important or at risk in digital society – such as solidarity, democratic control and justice – or narrowly redefine them as privacy concerns. The focus on data protection may also be counterproductive at a time when Big Tech is developing privacy-friendly ways to expand into new sectors of society. Moreover, governments may increasingly use privacy to evade discussion and critique. The panel will address the effects of the rise to dominance of privacy and data protection concerns.

• What kind of strategic uses is privacy being put to, by corporations and governments?
• Where does data protection law fall short in protecting people from digital harms?
• Which values and rights have suffered from the focus on privacy and data protection, and deserve more attention?
• How can we explain the historical rise to dominance of privacy and data protection in public debate and regulation?


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