The EU's GDPR is a well-intended step in the history of privacy protection. It would have been a better law if the EU regulators had studied the U.S. practices and their relative success in preventing abuses while making marketing more successful, contributing to economic growth positively affecting all Americans as well as non-American stockholders in U.S. corporations.
The predicted further regulations being contemplated according to inside sources in the EU could seriously hamper the economic success of the EU and its citizens as well as non-EU investors in EU corporations. My contention is that the American system has been working pretty darn well so far, despite hiccups like Nebuad and Vizio* and the alleged cyberattack via Cambridge Analytica and its accomplices, which being a nation-to-nation paramilitary action ought to be considered extraordinary to the scope we are dealing with in this post. Regulation would not stop a paramilitary attack in any case.
In this short series of posts I will seek to cover the history, current events and prescribed future courses of action for the U.S. and all other countries. My intention is to minimize harm to all parties resulting from the new media technologies, specifically with regard to privacy. The aim is an optimized solution, maximizing benefit to all parties starting with the consumer/citizen and including businesses, nonprofits and governments, i.e. everybody.
My central premise is that over-regulation of privacy will make marketing less efficient and thereby lower stock prices to the degree of causing recessions and/or depressions depending on the degree of regulatory error.
In 1995 I led the creation of the CASIE Privacy Principles for the ANA, 4As and ARF. The Coalition of Advertiser Supported Information Entertainment was the industry's response to a gauntlet thrown down by Procter & Gamble CEO Ed Artzt who was concerned that the digital information superhighway was being built without the needs of advertisers being considered. I was not the chair of CASIE but a member who said we should focus on privacy and thus was given the task of leading the collaborative writing of the guidelines. This took more than 20 drafts, each one being marked up by dozens of companies and nearly a hundred people, until we all agreed on the final version.
These were the key principles:
Not every company has followed every one of these principles 100% but in general this self-regulatory platform has worked very well for 23 years.
Coming up in my next post:
*Thanks to Jane Clarke for reminding me of the Vizio incident.
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