Proposed California law requires site privacy polices not to exceed 8th grade language and 100 words. We all do know that privacy policies can become long and complicated, but they encompass complex principles. And while we're probably very much in favor of making them as understandable as possible, trying to limit privacy policies in such an arbitrary manner makes about as much sense as trying to legislate the value of pi. In fact, the actual bill itself would violate its own designated limits many times over. And I've now just about hit the actual 100 word limit itself. Sorry about
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- Right, that would be de facto confusing. Oops!Feb 9, 2013
- Deep inside, I think it's fundamentally misguided. It's possible that sponsors of such a proposed law believe that privacy policies are made more complex than necessary in order to be opaque.
Limiting privacy policies to 100 words means that complex problems become impossible to solve, because complex problems require complex solutions.
I see two possible outcomes:
-privacy policies do get shrunk down to 100 words without the products themselves changing, so that nobody has any chance of having meaningful information about what the products really do, boiling down to saying "this product handles your private information" which provides no more information than prop 65 warnings.
-products disappear from California, the same way COPPA resulted in many products getting simply forbidden for pre-teens.Feb 9, 2013
- Most lawyers can't say hello in less than 100 words.Feb 10, 2013
"This website handles your private information..."
"I'll sue! I used your website to publish information. Therefore, it became public information. However, you never claimed your website would handle my public information, but it did. Liar!"
"This website handles your public and private information..."
"I'll sue! What gives your website the right to handle MY information? It's mine!"
"This website does everything. You don't exist. Go ahead and sue us. We've got more money and power than you do."Feb 10, 2013