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Author: Subject: Privacy Act in Australia
John Briggs
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[*] posted on 6-8-2007 at 07:42 AM


As stated, if someone wanted to persue it legaly they could per the laws in place. It's poving the ability to snoop for unethical means. This could fall into any category such as inside trade secrets etc. It's simply that no precedent has been set forth yet. The law allows the argument and means to pursue. Remember that ethics and law are objective and arguable. They are open to course and action per proof of case.



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rightyo
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[*] posted on 6-8-2007 at 07:48 AM


I'd like to see a law that covers it. There isn't one.
John Briggs
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[*] posted on 6-8-2007 at 08:00 AM


Quote:
Originally posted by rightyo
I'd like to see a law that covers it. There isn't one.


again, you fail yto see my point. The law has the scope to utilize it to pursue such matters. It's a point of proving it. The full scope of the law has entitlements that can be appointed to such a case. It's a matter of making the precedent.

A real example is the telecommunications laws regarding phones and how those laws were use in a applicable format to to arbitrate and pursue inter crime and privacy matters.



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Nic-Isaac
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[*] posted on 6-8-2007 at 02:49 PM


Personally I like the feature of being able to read the members U2Us. At times, it is appropriate to do so. Rather you have a member that is causing trouble on the forums or there are things going on behind your back within your forum staff.

All of this legal talk is for the AUS. I live in the USA. Here, it IS legal for an employer to look at employees files, e-mail, IMs, everything. Therefore, there is no LEGAL issue here in the states that is against this kind of thing.

When someone is being harassed on my forums... I look at the person that is doing the harassment because who is to say they are not doing it to other members that have not reported them?

In the states it is legal. Therefore, I do not see a problem with having this feature.

However, I understand that XMB can be held responsible in some countries for allowing this feature to be in place. Therefore as programmers... you can not put it in the software.
John Briggs
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[*] posted on 6-8-2007 at 03:14 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by Nic-Isaac
Personally I like the feature of being able to read the members U2Us. At times, it is appropriate to do so. Rather you have a member that is causing trouble on the forums or there are things going on behind your back within your forum staff.

All of this legal talk is for the AUS. I live in the USA. Here, it IS legal for an employer to look at employees files, e-mail, IMs, everything. Therefore, there is no LEGAL issue here in the states that is against this kind of thing.

When someone is being harassed on my forums... I look at the person that is doing the harassment because who is to say they are not doing it to other members that have not reported them?

In the states it is legal. Therefore, I do not see a problem with having this feature.

However, I understand that XMB can be held responsible in some countries for allowing this feature to be in place. Therefore as programmers... you can not put it in the software.


XMB cannot be held responsible for allowing such a feature. It's a matter of the devs making the choice for you. If I told you why it was removed you would be shocked though.;) It's not legal to invade someone's privacy. There are privacy acts in place in the USA. BY employee as you stated, you would have to prove they are your employee. it's is a matter of ethics as well. There are some states that do not allow such actions as well. Consult with legal council for more details on your state.

THis is a good example in my humble opinion of invasion of privacy.

Quote:

or there are things going on behind your back within your forum staff




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[*] posted on 6-8-2007 at 05:28 PM


i feel if i am providing a free place for people to enjoy... and i pay all this money for hosting, domain, etc... then i have the right to look at the information that is being held in my respective place.

its just like if someone came into your home and was talking privately about something. if you feel something is going on that you need to know about... it's your right to do whatever means you want to know.

it's not like i do it for the fun of it. i do it to protect the popular website that i have built, run, and pay for. if it was a paid service... i would feel totally different.

it would be like if i owned a store... it's a public place... however... i get to record anything i want to in there as long as there are notices in place. it is LEGAL in the USA to do that. it should be the same concept with message boards and such. as long as i place a notice that we have the ability to read any data including U2Us... then it's legal. and that can be held up in court.

i don't know what kind of "legal" trouble XMB devs could get into if any. i'm not that knowledgeable about that.
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[*] posted on 3-30-2008 at 10:01 AM


Interesting discussion, thanks folks, I had wondered why this facility had been phased out. I agree with the morality of the decision but does anyone know what the legal stance is in the UK on this subject?
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[*] posted on 3-30-2008 at 03:13 PM


I can understand Nic-Isaac's point very well.
Though with this kind of function in the XMB board it would depend on the intention of the Administrator whether it is being used for appropriate reasons.

I am sure that it would be illegal in the Netherlands to have this function in a board.
It would be infringement of the rules on privacy here.

Is the providing of an optional mod an option Mr. Briggs ?

I have no intention to use or install it, but it seems some people have.
Usage rights could include that XMB takes no responsibility whatsoever for the means to apply this mod?

Just thinking along with both lines here...

Regards,

-Melvin
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[*] posted on 3-30-2008 at 09:16 PM


It wouldn't be a mod no.
There are methods of monitoring these messages without any such mod, and I can't say that anyone would make a mod which would be considered illegal by any such party.
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[*] posted on 4-9-2008 at 07:32 AM


Then why do people ask for this function if it is allready somewhere in the package?

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[*] posted on 4-9-2008 at 08:13 AM


It's not "in the package" there are methods of monitoring the messages because XMB stores the messages as text in MySQL. There's no "encoding" of any kind on the messages.
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[*] posted on 4-9-2008 at 09:13 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by mostlysunny04
Interesting discussion, thanks folks, I had wondered why this facility had been phased out. I agree with the morality of the decision but does anyone know what the legal stance is in the UK on this subject?


It's here, in the Data Protection Act:

http://www.opsi.gov.uk/Acts/Acts1998/ukpga_19980029_en_3#pt2...

Quote:

10 Right to prevent processing likely to cause damage or distress

(1)Subject to subsection (2), an individual is entitled at any time by notice in writing to a data controller to require the data controller at the end of such period as is reasonable in the circumstances to cease, or not to begin, processing, or processing for a specified purpose or in a specified manner, any personal data in respect of which he is the data subject, on the ground that, for specified reasons—
(a)the processing of those data or their processing for that purpose or in that manner is causing or is likely to cause substantial damage or substantial distress to him or to another, and
(b)that damage or distress is or would be unwarranted.


and if you don't do this as admin, this can be the result:

Quote:

13 Compensation for failure to comply with certain requirements

(1)An individual who suffers damage by reason of any contravention by a data controller of any of the requirements of this Act is entitled to compensation from the data controller for that damage.
(2)An individual who suffers distress by reason of any contravention by a data controller of any of the requirements of this Act is entitled to compensation from the data controller for that distress if—
(a)the individual also suffers damage by reason of the contravention, or
(b)the contravention relates to the processing of personal data for the special purposes.
(3)In proceedings brought against a person by virtue of this section it is a defence to prove that he had taken such care as in all the circumstances was reasonably required to comply with the requirement concerned.


Honestly, this is even more stringent than the Australian anti-snooping law. Any forum manufacturer would be extraordinarily stupid to provide snooping functionality as it would expose them to tortuous liability from the obvious potential for abuse. We can forsee (and have seen HERE at XMB in the past) illicit use of the old functionality. Therefore, including it means that XMB knew about the risks of abuse, and thus opens the forum backers (iEntry and any staff with deep pockets) to civil remedies.

It would be extremely dumb to keep this feature or make it available as a mod.

Andrew
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