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MacRumors
May 25, 2011, 03:19 PM
http://images.macrumors.com/im/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/05/25/senator-asks-apple-and-google-to-require-clear-privacy-policies-for-apps/)


http://images.macrumors.com/article-new/2011/05/core_location_map.jpg

Following up on testimony (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/05/10/apple-testifies-on-mobile-privacy-location-cache-encryption-coming-to-ios/) from Apple and Google representatives regarding mobile privacy, U.S. Senator Al Franken has sent out (http://www.loopinsight.com/2011/05/25/senator-franken-asks-apple-google-to-require-privacy-policies-for-apps/) a letter (PDF) (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/05/10/apple-testifies-on-mobile-privacy-location-cache-encryption-coming-to-ios/) to Apple and Google requesting that the companies require developers to include "clear and understandable" privacy policies for apps available in their marketplaces.At the hearing, I asked Dr. Tribble and Mr. Davidson whether Apple and Google would commit to requiring that all applications in the Apple App Store and Android App Market have clear and understandable privacy policies. I am writing today to renew this request, and ask if each of your companies would be willing to adopt this simple first step towards further protecting your users' privacy. Franken notes that the action would not resolve privacy concerns related to mobile apps, but would be an easy and reasonable first step to ensure that customers have appropriate information about what information is being collected and how it is being used.

At a minimum, Franken requests that such privacy policies be required of location-aware applications, although he believes that all applications should be subject to the requirement.Apple and Google have each said time and again that they are committed to protecting users' privacy. This is an easy opportunity for your companies to put that commitment into action.Franken has been spearheading legislators' inquiries into mobile privacy since last month's high-profile disclosure (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/04/20/researchers-disclose-iphone-and-ipad-location-tracking-privacy-issues/) of geolocation data being stored on users' devices and in backups on their computers. His initial letter to Apple (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/04/21/senator-asks-apple-about-location-tracking-issues-as-experts-weigh-in/) kicked off congressional interest in the topic and led to the hearing earlier this month attended by Apple's Bud Tribble, Google's Alan Davidson, and several other experts and privacy advocates.

Article Link: Senator Asks Apple and Google to Require Clear Privacy Policies for Apps (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/05/25/senator-asks-apple-and-google-to-require-clear-privacy-policies-for-apps/)



shadygrove
May 25, 2011, 03:28 PM
What a joke. The politicians should force each other to write "clear and understandable" legislation that isn't 2,000 lines long the average isn't capable of comprehending. As always, hypocritical politicians getting in the way.

Xtremehkr
May 25, 2011, 03:28 PM
Al Franken (Senator Internet) is doing a commendable job of protecting consumers in the digital world. He's doing great work in terms of protecting net neutrality and keeping the internet open.

Apple and Google could save themselves a lot of future problems by agreeing on these standards early and through protecting the privacy of their consumers.

It's only going to take one good event involving a data breach or personal information breach due to lack of digital privacy/security before the public really starts demanding that something be done to protect them from malicious programmers.

Jazwire
May 25, 2011, 03:42 PM
Franken is a douche.

Krevnik
May 25, 2011, 03:42 PM
Al Franken (Senator Internet) is doing a commendable job of protecting consumers in the digital world. He's doing great work in terms of protecting net neutrality and keeping the internet open.

Apple and Google could save themselves a lot of future problems by agreeing on these standards early and through protecting the privacy of their consumers.

It's only going to take one good event involving a data breach or personal information breach due to lack of digital privacy/security before the public really starts demanding that something be done to protect them from malicious programmers.

The problem is that Apple is actually right on this one when they were asked previously: It isn't enough. The issue of enforcement is one that Fraken is currently hand-waving away and ignoring. Enforcement won't catch all the situations where a developer may lie about the data transfer. How do I validate what an app sends back to the mothership through an encrypted channel, for example?

What Apple has been doing instead is allowing the user to mis-trust the developer and lock them out of the location information if the app asks for it. That is easy to enforce and puts the power in the hands of the user. Unfortunately, it doesn't help situations where an app with legitimate reasons to access the information also uses it for more nefarious purposes, but depending on how nefarious, a privacy policy requirement isn't going to stop it.

ten-oak-druid
May 25, 2011, 03:43 PM
Good news!

Doctor Q
May 25, 2011, 03:44 PM
I'm glad it's a question, not a demand, since it's a topic that deserves discussion and involves tradeoffs.

What information should be considered private? What are apps doing with our information? How should we be told about it? What control should we have?

For example, should our location data be shared with the world except where we opt-out or should it be completely protected and hidden to everyone else except where we opt-in? How should responsibility for privacy be shared among us the consumers, app developers, gadget vendors, and laws?

RafaelT
May 25, 2011, 03:45 PM
I think this is a good thing... but at the same time it doesn't seem like the most pressing issue they could be dealing with right now. I think our country has a few other things they could be working on.

There is also nothing stopping an app from putting out a privacy policy that says one thing and doing something else. Whenever I put my info online or in an app I don't expect that what I put in there is going to stay secret. If I am not comfortable having info known then I don't put it out there.

and +1 to the poster who talked about them writing there bills and legislation in plain English.

mcmlxix
May 25, 2011, 03:48 PM
My Senator Franken is a joke and a hypocrite. Privacy? What about the "Patriot" Act dear Senator?

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 03:52 PM
What's next? A Federal Software Agency?

We did fine for decades without one, but I guess here it comes.

Xtremehkr
May 25, 2011, 03:54 PM
The problem is that Apple is actually right on this one when they were asked previously: It isn't enough. The issue of enforcement is one that Fraken is currently hand-waving away and ignoring. Enforcement won't catch all the situations where a developer may lie about the data transfer. How do I validate what an app sends back to the mothership through an encrypted channel, for example?

What Apple has been doing instead is allowing the user to mis-trust the developer and lock them out of the location information if the app asks for it. That is easy to enforce and puts the power in the hands of the user. Unfortunately, it doesn't help situations where an app with legitimate reasons to access the information also uses it for more nefarious purposes, but depending on how nefarious, a privacy policy requirement isn't going to stop it.

Would you rather have Apple and Google address this situation, or the government?

All it's going to take is one major security scandal to have consumers demanding more protections in the digital world. At that point the government will fell compelled to step in.

I think it would be a good idea if Apple and Google took care of this problem themselves.

Apple, already, largely fulfills this function but there are ways around it. If everything has to go through an Apple cloud, it seems like Apple could have a pretty good handle on information flow.

Virtualball
May 25, 2011, 03:55 PM
The hypocrisy of my country is disgusting. We ask Apple and Google to tell users why their locations are tracked for FEATURES THEY SIGNED UP FOR, but then sign another 4 years of an unamended Patriot Act. Why are my politicians even paid to care about whether Angry Birds knows where I am? What a sad waste of tax dollars. Seriously, **** this place.

Small White Car
May 25, 2011, 03:55 PM
I like how a Senator can ask a company to simply be honest with their customers and it somehow sets off the MacRumors community as an unreasonable outrage.

What a place we got here, huh?

err404
May 25, 2011, 03:55 PM
While I agree that clear policies are beneficial to users, this seems hypocritical. The obfuscation of policies is far worse in any government agency or legal system.

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 03:57 PM
Would you rather have Apple and Google address this situation, or the government?

It's the same thing at this point. "We'll give you a chance to do what we want you to do of your own free will, but if you don't, we'll force you to do it." Doesn't sound much like it is in the spirit of free choice to me.

dgree03
May 25, 2011, 03:58 PM
Google already gives CLEAR instruction on an apps function before you install anything.

Its apple that is lacking here.

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 04:01 PM
Google already gives CLEAR instruction on an apps function before you install anything.

Its apple that is lacking here.

Can't we figure this out ourselves? Read reviews after the tech sites pick them apart? Use some common sense and be skeptical? Do we really need government doing this for us?

Small White Car
May 25, 2011, 04:02 PM
Google already gives CLEAR instruction on an apps function before you install anything.


Are you kidding? Google is the king of data mining. What do they know about Android users? Who do they sell it to? Why are they SO insistant that all Android phones have Google Maps on them? Clearly they're making money from that being on your phone. How, exactly? Do they know what stores I'm visiting? I dunno, I've never seen them explain all that. Have you? Where do they list it all?

Xtremehkr
May 25, 2011, 04:18 PM
It's the same thing at this point. "We'll give you a chance to do what we want you to do of your own free will, but if you don't, we'll force you to do it." Doesn't sound much like it is in the spirit of free choice to me.

Except when it's consumer driven because people are tired of losing information or money.

Then, due to a lack of action on issues of security/privacy, it will become regulated.

'Doing nothing' isn't a solution.

ktappe
May 25, 2011, 04:23 PM
If Franken is so concerned with protecting privacy, then why does he keep supporting the extension of the PATRIOT act that allows the government to invade the privacy of American citizens? Serious double-standard there. :confused:

phillipduran
May 25, 2011, 04:25 PM
What a joke. The politicians should force each other to write "clear and understandable" legislation that isn't 2,000 lines long the average isn't capable of comprehending. As always, hypocritical politicians getting in the way.

This!

Consultant
May 25, 2011, 04:26 PM
It'll be easy for Apple to comply. Apple's goal is to make user happy to sell devices.

Google's goal is to sell user information to advertisers.

mytdave
May 25, 2011, 04:28 PM
Oh goodie! Force everyone to write a policy. A policy will protect everyone - yea right.

I prefer Apple's approach to have a location services notification part of the API - so when an app wants to use location services it has to notify the user to accept the function. Simple.

Nobody is going to read a privacy policy before they click thru on the dialogue. If people want to read a mile long policy written by monkeys, the developer can optionally provide a link to such in the app's info section.

blackpond
May 25, 2011, 04:29 PM
Consumer protection equals a few lines of text buried in a multi-page privacy policy that nobody reads?

If they want users 'protected' from this evil location tracking they should sound an air raid siren and pop up a few hundred confirmation dialog boxes every time an application asks for location information.

Then show video clips of kittens being eaten by hawks and some old lady without a voice box telling her story about how location tracking ruined her life.

yes... that ought to do it.

ppc_michael
May 25, 2011, 04:29 PM
Franken notes that the action would not resolve privacy concerns related to mobile apps, but would be an easy and reasonable first step to ensure that customers have appropriate information about what information is being collected and how it is being used.

Definitely sounds reasonable to me. I don't understand why so many people here seem to be against a request for a clear, understandable contract.

SkyStudios
May 25, 2011, 04:32 PM
Al Franken (Senator Internet) is doing a commendable job of protecting consumers in the digital world. He's doing great work in terms of protecting net neutrality and keeping the internet open.

Apple and Google could save themselves a lot of future problems by agreeing on these standards early and through protecting the privacy of their consumers.

It's only going to take one good event involving a data breach or personal information breach due to lack of digital privacy/security before the public really starts demanding that something be done to protect them from malicious programmers.
Right on, anyone who disagrees has to be con artist, i can not see why anyone would agree to allow people to fallow someone's every move, this alone gives murders, stalkers, assassins, kidnappers, burglars etc too much information and leaves law enforcement , especially federal chasing the case endlessly, its got to be tightened thats all, so why would anyone cry about it, i say if they refuse to respect Congress then hey, fair is fair, its what Congress is for, the people.

SkyStudios
May 25, 2011, 04:36 PM
Definitely sounds reasonable to me. I don't understand why so many people here seem to be against a request for a clear, understandable contract.

Facebooks staff did the same thing, all these companies tell employees to get online and share their minds, they dont want to get fired obviously lol, Congress can investigate who is behind every IP in these cases. ,

It would be stubborn of Apple, Google, Facebook, Myspace etc to NOT respect the request and be clear, just as it would be for the Senator here to bring on the LAW, i am sure it snot his personal choice, its hard job but hey, if they dont respect his then who will.

blackpond
May 25, 2011, 04:38 PM
You all only wish Apple cared where you were last week. :p

econgeek
May 25, 2011, 04:42 PM
FRanken, who has voted for TWO bills that are now law, both of which GUT privacy protections for health care information, can shove his demands for privacy where the sun don't shine.

In fact, why the hell is the Attorney General not launching an investigation into these senators who think they can violate the first amendment by dictating to Apple what they do and don't publish on the appstore?

Violations of anyones constitutional rights is a felony under USC 18-242.

(the two bills were the "Stimulus" bill which had very little to do with actually stimulating the economy, but does require hospitals to turn over all health care info to the federal government and obamacare which turns all health information over tie the IRS.)

CFreymarc
May 25, 2011, 04:42 PM
What Apple has been doing instead is allowing the user to mis-trust the developer and lock them out of the location information if the app asks for it. That is easy to enforce and puts the power in the hands of the user. Unfortunately, it doesn't help situations where an app with legitimate reasons to access the information also uses it for more nefarious purposes, but depending on how nefarious, a privacy policy requirement isn't going to stop it.

You hit the nail right on the head. This is where branding is very important. I'd like to see a company have a public policy stating what data is used and where for their purposes. Also, paying the customer back for tracking and demographics data in the form of a discount should happen. This is what all of these "buyer club" cards in supermarkets do. I can see a similar program happen for mobile apps.

econgeek
May 25, 2011, 04:44 PM
Al Franken (Senator Internet) is doing a commendable job of protecting consumers in the digital world.

By requiring all of your private healthcare information to be shared with unaccountable burocrats and to be used against you?

Don't fall for this grandstanding BS.

He's violating the law here-- attempting to dictate terms to Apple which are outside his constitutionally granted powers. (The first ammendment forbids federal involvement in publishing, and nowhere in the constitution is the government given the power to regulate privacy.)

He is, quite frankly, a criminal.

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 04:45 PM
Except when it's consumer driven because people are tired of losing information or money.

Then, due to a lack of action on issues of security/privacy, it will become regulated.

'Doing nothing' isn't a solution.

What about consumers who are willing to make a compromise in order to use some app or service? Should they be denied to use such services for their own good? When government steps in, opportunities disappear.

Just imagine if government years ago had decided web crawlers were illegal, due to privacy concerns. There'd be no search. Or go back further and say it's a copyright violation to link to someone else's content. No web. And no one would ever realize anything was amiss. But we wouldn't have what we have today.

Small White Car
May 25, 2011, 04:47 PM
In fact, why the hell is the Attorney General not launching an investigation into these senators who think they can violate the first amendment by dictating to Apple what they do and don't publish on the appstore?


Maybe because the Attorney General actually read the article and realized it doesn't say what you say it does?

What about consumers who are willing to make a compromise in order to use some app or service? Should they be denied to use such services for their own good? When government steps in, opportunities disappear.


How would having "clear and understandable privacy policies" prevent you from using an app?

I'm at a loss for why so many of you think that "explaining what the app does" means the app won't exist anymore.

Huh?

Just imagine if government years ago had decided web crawlers were illegal, due to privacy concerns. There'd be no search. Or go back further and say it's a copyright violation to link to someone else's content. No web. And no one would ever realize anything was amiss. But we wouldn't have what we have today.

And if the government had made dogs illegal then...no dogs!

Ok, yeah. But what does any of this have to do with asking that apps explain to customers what they do?

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 04:53 PM
By requiring all of your private healthcare information to be shared with unaccountable burocrats and to be used against you?

Don't fall for this grandstanding BS.

He's violating the law here-- attempting to dictate terms to Apple which are outside his constitutionally granted powers. (The first ammendment forbids federal involvement in publishing, and nowhere in the constitution is the government given the power to regulate privacy.)

He is, quite frankly, a criminal.

Sadly, I don't expend too much mental energy worrying about the Constitution anymore. It's effectively been done away with, and there's nothing I can do but be angry about it.

I've come to accept that congress has the power to do absolutely anything for which they can secure a majority vote, and when they can't do that, via new regulations in existing bureaucracies.

Once in awhile the Supreme Court will strike down this or that, but the decisions are always political versus constitutional. It's just another legislature.

Baumi
May 25, 2011, 04:57 PM
I don't understand why people keep pointing at government shortcomings in order to ridicule this proposal.

It's true that US government – just like any other givernment around the world – has its share of problems and bad policies. However, unless you seriously think government shouldn't have a say in anything at all until it gets its own issues sorted out (which would probably mean anarchy for the forseeable future and most likely beyond that :D ), you should reject or embrace this issue on its own merits. Either you agree with Franken's idea or you don't. Pointing at anything else to change the subject is just muddying the waters.

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 04:57 PM
Ok, yeah. But what does any of this have to do with asking that apps explain to customers what they do?

Well, one, they're telling, not asking. The "asking" part is just a courtesy.

Two, you're opening the door to massive software regulation by supporting this. We're eventually going to have government dictate that Doodle Jump must provide unlimited pauses, because three is unfair.

Computers and the internet were sort of the last refuge of unmitigated freedom and the last wild frontier. We're not likely to colonize space and establish new societies any time soon, so this was pretty much it for us, and now it's slipping away.

farmboy
May 25, 2011, 04:58 PM
The hypocrisy of my country is disgusting. We ask Apple and Google to tell users why their locations are tracked for FEATURES THEY SIGNED UP FOR, but then sign another 4 years of an unamended Patriot Act. Why are my politicians even paid to care about whether Angry Birds knows where I am? What a sad waste of tax dollars. Seriously, **** this place.

Uh, yeah, as if all legislation in this country and every other country has always been completely consistent and without contradiction, and this just puts it over the edge.

rudigern
May 25, 2011, 04:58 PM
This has not been thought through at all. Privacy policies should be written by lawyers. Indie developers can't afford them so then what. Apple writes a global one that developers subscribe to linked to their Apple Developer Account? That currently already sort of happens. Even if it is refined, Apps that want location data for ill intent will just send it encrypted so no one knows. This does nothing, its just for the Senator's reputation.

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 05:02 PM
This has not been thought through at all. Privacy policies should be written by lawyers. Indie developers can't afford them so then what. Apple writes a global one that developers subscribe to linked to their Apple Developer Account? That currently already sort of happens. Even if it is refined, Apps that want location data for ill intent will just send it encrypted so no one knows. This does nothing except for the Senators reputation.

Your approach keeps Apple in control of their ecosystem, protects developers from litigation, while still allowing the consumer to decide whether or not to use these services.

Clearly, this is dangerous and the government cannot let this stand!

Small White Car
May 25, 2011, 05:03 PM
Computers and the internet were sort of the last refuge of unmitigated freedom and the last wild frontier. We're not likely to colonize space and establish new societies any time soon, so this was pretty much it for us, and now it's slipping away.

What are you talking about?

Right now companies like Google totally own us. You're asking me to believe that if congress wrestles a little bit of that control away it'll be a bad thing for me?

"Freedom?" Please. Don't tell me I have freedom just so you can act like a patriot or George Washington or something. The opposite of "the government owns you" isn't freedom. No, it's "a company owns you." Pick one or the other, I don't care, but don't try and tell me that "freedom" is some magical 3rd option.

coder12
May 25, 2011, 05:05 PM
What a joke.

He was a comedian ... :rolleyes:

Don't look at me for this guy, I voted against him :P

Xtremehkr
May 25, 2011, 05:12 PM
By requiring all of your private healthcare information to be shared with unaccountable burocrats and to be used against you?

Don't fall for this grandstanding BS.

He's violating the law here-- attempting to dictate terms to Apple which are outside his constitutionally granted powers. (The first ammendment forbids federal involvement in publishing, and nowhere in the constitution is the government given the power to regulate privacy.)

He is, quite frankly, a criminal.

I can only characterize this as an onerous mischaracterization of what Sen Franken has done, there's really nothing else to be said about it.

Vizin
May 25, 2011, 05:13 PM
.

Xtremehkr
May 25, 2011, 05:16 PM
What about consumers who are willing to make a compromise in order to use some app or service? Should they be denied to use such services for their own good? When government steps in, opportunities disappear.

Just imagine if government years ago had decided web crawlers were illegal, due to privacy concerns. There'd be no search. Or go back further and say it's a copyright violation to link to someone else's content. No web. And no one would ever realize anything was amiss. But we wouldn't have what we have today.

I don't think legislation that mandates Apps do only what they claim (as opposed to spying on and selling users information) is taking anything away from consumers. It's nothing more than another level of consumer protection that could come from Apple, Google, or the government. Most reliably from the government but probably best implemented by Apple or Google.

If you still wanted 'non government tainted' Apps for your iPhone you could always jailbreak it and run the risks of dealing with App developers who have a reason to avoid being held to the standard that their App will do what it says it will.

I think you're letting your distaste of government cloud your judgement.

Vizin
May 25, 2011, 05:17 PM
.

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 05:20 PM
I think you're letting your distaste of government cloud your judgement.

I like government just fine when it does the things it's supposed to do.

I don't consider regulating software to be one of those things. That's far better left to developers and consumers.

Doctor Q
May 25, 2011, 05:26 PM
As an indie developer, I'm more than willing to tell users what my app is doing with their information. I have nothing to hide, and if a user is more likely to use my app because of this peace of mind, that's good for me.

I'm for it if the requirement is just a plain-English description of what is done with the information. However if all apps required formal, legal privacy policies, I'd be in real trouble. I absolutely can't afford a lawyer to draft up a legal document.
What would you think if Apple offered you a way to provide your privacy policy to users by filling out a form Apple gives to developers? Would that interfere with your ability to pick your own policy and publish it as you see fit, or would it help you by having Apple take care of the formalities for you?

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 05:27 PM
Apps are sold across state lines, meaning Congress has jurisdiction.

Unfortunately you are correct, thanks to many spectacularly bad Supreme Court decisions over the centuries.

It was intended quite literally to regulate interstate commerce - to prevent states from punishing other states by erecting trade barriers. It was not intended to give the federal government absolute power over a person or company just because they sell something across state lines. Some jurisprudence eliminates the across state lines bit entirely.

It means that now, unfortunately. It's why the federal government has absolute legislative authority.

farmboy
May 25, 2011, 05:29 PM
FRanken, who has voted for TWO bills that are now law, both of which GUT privacy protections for health care information, can shove his demands for privacy where the sun don't shine.

In fact, why the hell is the Attorney General not launching an investigation into these senators who think they can violate the first amendment by dictating to Apple what they do and don't publish on the appstore?

Violations of anyones constitutional rights is a felony under USC 18-242.

(the two bills were the "Stimulus" bill which had very little to do with actually stimulating the economy, but does require hospitals to turn over all health care info to the federal government and obamacare which turns all health information over tie the IRS.)

First, as an Econgeek, you should make yourself aware of the Commerce Clause (Article 1, Section 8, Clause 3), which gives Congress the specific power to regulate commerce. The buying and selling of software products constitutes commerce and is subject to regulation. Franken has a right to *request* that Apple and Google make such changes, both as a Senator, and as a private citizen (you can do it too). It's not the same as passing legislation, which Congress could also do under these powers, and it has nothing to do with First Amendment rights.

Second, the Stimulus Bill sets up a long term provision to computerize health care records, and establish federal guidelines on the structure of the records, so that they could be shared across platforms and systems. Records could be shared among health plans/providers, but individuals would have the opportunity to opt out of such sharing. It in no way gives your health care information to the federal government. It is estimated that 200,000 jobs could be created by this provision.

Third, Obama's health plan works the other way: the IRS must report to the Health Commissioner the income records of those who apply for federal assistance in purchasing qualified health plans. Your health care records do not go to the IRS.

Vizin
May 25, 2011, 05:37 PM
.

Consultant
May 25, 2011, 05:39 PM
What would you think if Apple offered you a way to provide your privacy policy to users by filling out a form Apple gives to developers? Would that interfere with your ability to pick your own policy and publish it as you see fit, or would it help you by having Apple take care of the formalities for you?

Doesn't iOS magazine subscription already got something like it?

Bubba Satori
May 25, 2011, 05:42 PM
Big Brother politician grilling Big Brother companies. Brilliant !

thatisme
May 25, 2011, 05:49 PM
Label: May cause drowsiness
Nytol sleeping pills

Label: This product may contain nuts
Peanut M&Ms

Label: This program may be able to locate your whereabouts (Al Frankin)
TomTom Navigation for iOS

We don't need additional warnings. We need people to become more personally aware for themselves:

You have a Cell Phone with a GPS chip in it and the phone contains memory? Well, one may conclude that there *could* be a possibility that the phone could log your location over time and store it somewhere in memory for later use. If you are paranoid, toggle location services off.

Should a coffee cup have really need warning for you that the contents may be hot?

farmboy
May 25, 2011, 05:54 PM
Unfortunately you are correct, thanks to many spectacularly bad Supreme Court decisions over the centuries.

It was intended quite literally to regulate interstate commerce - to prevent states from punishing other states by erecting trade barriers. It was not intended to give the federal government absolute power over a person or company just because they sell something across state lines. Some jurisprudence eliminates the across state lines bit entirely.

It means that now, unfortunately. It's why the federal government has absolute legislative authority.

Wes, are you seriously saying that many bad SCOTUS decisions OVER CENTURIES (!) collectively and cohesively led to this? Come on, this is how the provisions are refined in the entire constitution, and exactly how the founding fathers expected the Constitution to be refined (that is, when they weren't "fighting slavery"... thanks Michelle Bachmann aka one half of Bachmann-Palin Overdrive, the Dumbest People on Earth. I always love that one. And thanks to those brave patriots in Concord, New Hampshire, too, for that shot heard 'round the world and that bridge thingy and stuff).

And to be perfectly honest, the commerce clause as legislated ain't too bad for what it has to cover and the need to strike a balance between federal interests and state interests, which have grown from barter commerce with adjacent states in the beginning to today's astoundingly complex commerce across the continent and the world.

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 06:01 PM
Wes, are you seriously saying that many bad SCOTUS decisions OVER CENTURIES (!) collectively and cohesively led to this? Come on, this is how the provisions are refined in the entire constitution, and exactly how the founding fathers expected the Constitution to be refined (that is, when they weren't "fighting slavery"... thanks Michelle Bachmann aka one half of Bachmann-Palin Overdrive, the Dumbest People on Earth. I always love that one. And thanks to those brave patriots in Concord, New Hampshire, too, for that shot heard 'round the world and that bridge thingy and stuff).

And to be perfectly honest, the commerce clause as legislated ain't too bad for what it has to cover and the need to strike a balance between federal interests and state interests, which have grown from barter commerce with adjacent states in the beginning to today's astoundingly complex commerce across the continent and the world.

When SCOTUS decided that growing your own wheat, on your own land, for your own personal consumption could be regulated as interstate commerce, I'd say they had refined to about the level of powdered sugar.

Xtremehkr
May 25, 2011, 06:03 PM
Label: May cause drowsiness
Nytol sleeping pills

Label: This product may contain nuts

Peanut M&Ms

Regular M&Ms and most MARS products contain peanut or significant enough traces of peanuts to kill most people with an allergy, and that's why they're labelled as containing peanuts.

That's beyond misleading, it's blatantly dishonest.

WestonHarvey1
May 25, 2011, 06:08 PM
Regular M&Ms and most MARS products contain peanut or significant enough traces of peanuts to kill most people with an allergy, and that's why they're labelled as containing peanuts.

That's beyond misleading, it's blatantly dishonest.

It's still kind of silly for it to be on the *peanut* M&Ms bag.

farmboy
May 25, 2011, 06:25 PM
When SCOTUS decided that growing your own wheat, on your own land, for your own personal consumption could be regulated as interstate commerce, I'd say they had refined to about the level of powdered sugar.

Of course the issue in Wickard v Filburn is whether his actions had an effect on interstate commerce. The federal interest was because they were trying to keep the entire farm economy from collapsing and causing a complete social breakdown. A drop in wheat prices would have had a tidal effect throughout the ag economy, especially in the late 30's. Filburn said he was growing it for his own use, but he was planting more acreage than he was allowed, and the feds determined that he was affecting commerce because the wheat prices would drop if that grain went to market. Prior restraint? Maybe. The feds may have been right, though. 20-20 hindsight and all. Not a simple issue at all.

Farming in general has always had kind of protected status in our economy because we can't under any circumstances allow a farm economy to crumble and starve the population, of which about 97% are non-farmers, and unable to feed themselves. And no seed stock for that backyard garden you think would tide you over.

jzuena
May 25, 2011, 06:42 PM
Wes, are you seriously saying that many bad SCOTUS decisions OVER CENTURIES (!) collectively and cohesively led to this? Come on, this is how the provisions are refined in the entire constitution, and exactly how the founding fathers expected the Constitution to be refined (that is, when they weren't "fighting slavery"... thanks Michelle Bachmann aka one half of Bachmann-Palin Overdrive, the Dumbest People on Earth. I always love that one. And thanks to those brave patriots in Concord, New Hampshire, too, for that shot heard 'round the world and that bridge thingy and stuff).

And to be perfectly honest, the commerce clause as legislated ain't too bad for what it has to cover and the need to strike a balance between federal interests and state interests, which have grown from barter commerce with adjacent states in the beginning to today's astoundingly complex commerce across the continent and the world.

Lexington (where the British first shot at and killed colonial minutemen on the town common) and Concord (where the colonial minutemen first shot at and killed British soldiers at the old north bridge) are adjoining towns IN MASSACHUSETTS. Each claims to be the location of the shot heard round the world, and it depends on whether you think the outrage of the British firing on colonists or the colonists being ballsy enough to shoot back later that morning is what the rest of the world took notice of. If you are going to try and sound smart, get your geography right.

MattInOz
May 25, 2011, 06:44 PM
As an indie developer, I'm more than willing to tell users what my app is doing with their information. I have nothing to hide, and if a user is more likely to use my app because of this peace of mind, that's good for me.

I'm for it if the requirement is just a plain-English description of what is done with the information. However if all apps required formal, legal privacy policies, I'd be in real trouble. I absolutely can't afford a lawyer to draft up a legal document.

I wonder if Apple could take another step on the system they have.
At the moment you get a blank request to use location services, plus I can go to location services see which app want location data, which ones are allowed, which one have made requests in the last 24 hours at any time and deny further info reaching that App. Yet the location services API allows a lot of fine grain control on part of the developer of how accurate the information is and how often. Why not give the user more info to make an informed choice?

To me the next step would be a simple 'more info' option to expand on that simple request. It only needs to be two Sentences one from Apple that would spell out in plan language what accuracy level of data has been requested. Something like "SuperTVProgramme app has requested a the location of your nearest cell tower and to be updated if your location changes by more 100km." another Sentence from the developer that they provide when they request saying why they would like that info. Maybe add a nice map that shows two dots one in blue with blue circle for what the app will be told and the other in another colour showing your GPS accurate position.

If the two don't seem to gel the user has more info to work from in making their choice. Even if the developer hasn't provided their half of the information the API provided side would still make it easier to make and informed choice. As the user would now be approving a finer grain of information the request would have to be popped up again if the request changed.

HyperX13
May 25, 2011, 06:50 PM
Al Franken is a liberal loon!

bwillwall
May 25, 2011, 06:56 PM
What an effing arzeole! Not to mention that is such a vague statement how can apple and google be expected to create a "easy to understand" privacy policy without any further details?

thatisme
May 25, 2011, 07:00 PM
Regular M&Ms and most MARS products contain peanut or significant enough traces of peanuts to kill most people with an allergy, and that's why they're labelled as containing peanuts.

That's beyond misleading, it's blatantly dishonest.

The point is not about MARS, it is about the Gov't requiring warnings and policy acceptance/awareness for everything. Most of these are either born out of litigation from some nitwit who spills a cup of coffee in a lap and believes a great injustice has been done because McDonalds hadn't warned her that Coffee was HOT!, or through some advocate in Congress that believes that the public is too stupid to think for themselves, thus requiring disclosure for every little thing.

The bottom line is that nobody is safer because of a few words printed on cups or through some legaleze that is presented before installing a program. Harm will be done. What has happened, however, is government finds yet another opening in which to exploit to gain just a little more control of you and business.

Tell me... How many warning stickers are plastered in your car? Can you tell me what they cover and can you honestly say that you are safer because there is a stupid white/yellow/black/red label on your visor? Where did all these come from?.... either litigation or government intervention.

The label warning you that your truck can tip over at high rates of speed in a tight turn DOESNT prevent the event from happening. Any rational person could see this as a potential issue before the label was affixed. However, we, the consumers pay extra for ever truck produced for these labels to be stuck, and for the legal teams required by every car manufacturer to ensure that they are in full compliance with Federal DOT and Highway Administration regulations REQUIRING that all vehicles proudly display the graphic of a stick figure being flung from a moving vehicle.

You may not see it, but this is just the beginning of the creation of a new governmental agency to regulate and monitor software producers and technology creators to "protect the unknowing public" from harm... Just as how OSHA, FDOT, Dept of Education, etc. were created.

... Bad things will come from those with the best of intentions.

tigres
May 25, 2011, 07:06 PM
Al Franken (Senator Internet) is doing a commendable job of protecting consumers in the digital world. He's doing great work in terms of protecting net neutrality and keeping the internet open.

Apple and Google could save themselves a lot of future problems by agreeing on these standards early and through protecting the privacy of their consumers.

It's only going to take one good event involving a data breach or personal information breach due to lack of digital privacy/security before the public really starts demanding that something be done to protect them from malicious programmers.

You mean like Sony?

PeterQVenkman
May 25, 2011, 07:21 PM
The point is not about MARS, it is about the Gov't requiring warnings and policy acceptance/awareness for everything. Most of these are either born out of litigation from some nitwit who spills a cup of coffee in a lap and believes a great injustice has been done because McDonalds hadn't warned her that Coffee was HOT!,

Bad example. There's hot coffee, and then there way too d@mn hot coffee.

A vascular surgeon determined that Liebeck suffered full thickness burns (or third-degree burns) over 6 percent of her body, including her inner thighs, perineum, buttocks, and genital and groin areas. She was hospitalized for eight days, during which time she underwent skin grafting. Liebeck, who also underwent debridement treatments, sought to settle her claim for $20,000, but McDonalds refused.

http://www.lectlaw.com/files/cur78.htm

Now think about your 80 year old grandma receiving those burns. The woman was 79 when she got that surprise.

ArchaicRevival
May 25, 2011, 07:34 PM
If Dr. Ron Paul is okay with it, I'm okay with it :)

SandynJosh
May 25, 2011, 07:37 PM
Would you rather have Apple and Google address this situation, or the government?

That's easy to answer, as long as we are dealing with companies that are seriously interested in protecting themselves from having to deal with the negative fallout of a security breach on their devices.

All it's going to take is one major security scandal to have consumers demanding more protections in the digital world. At that point the government will (sic) fell compelled to step in.

I think it would be a good idea if Apple and Google took care of this problem themselves.

Apple, already, largely fulfills this function but there are ways around it. If everything has to go through an Apple cloud, it seems like Apple could have a pretty good handle on information flow.

Since we are talking about a phone in this case, it has the ability to bypass the iCloud if the software is written right.

However, Apple does have an interesting level of control over the level of security that Android-based phones will never have:

1. Apple has control over the hardware and firmware design of one phone per year. Compare this to approx. 33 Android phone manufacturers putting out multiple phone models per year. Other then the top seven, who is making these other phones?

2. Apple has control over their own iOS and iOS updates. Compare this to the Android market where flavors and versions abound with no certain upgrade path exists. This is especially serious if an exploit of one of the flavors or versions of Android should be found.

3. Apple has oversight of all of the App™ Store programs. If one should be found to have security issues, it won't (a) be allowed to get into the store, or (b) if it does make it past the vetting process, Apple can deactivate all copies sold. Compare this to no oversight of the myriad of Android applications that are for all the various phone models, and android flavors & versions, written by programmers, some of which are not licensed to write Androiapplications. The door is wide open for abuse and there is no way to easily or certainly deactivate malware applications.

It seems to me that Google and Android phone manufacturers have a lot to fear the day serious exploitation malware is discovered. Once the platform is felt to be unsafe by the public, it may never regain market comfidence...especially by the government and enterprise customers.

Xtremehkr
May 25, 2011, 07:39 PM
You mean like Sony?

Sony are gaming accounts, credit card numbers related to kids gaming accounts. It's not really an example of Apps spying on people and reporting home but it's a good example of how peoples' credit can be exploited through lax corporate treatment of sensitive information.

People don't do a lot of online banking or bill paying from their Playstation accounts.

I don't want to hype the consequences but if something like the Sony disaster were to befall smartphones it would be quite a lot worse. Just think about what people use their smart phones for, as opposed to their online gaming account.

Xtremehkr
May 25, 2011, 07:40 PM
It seems to me that Google and Android phone manufacturers have a lot to fear the day serious exploitation malware is discovered. Once the platform is felt to be unsafe by the public, it may never regain market comfidence...especially by the government and enterprise customers.

Yes, it's in their self interest to do this whether or not Al Franken is involved.

firewood
May 25, 2011, 08:06 PM
I'm for it if the requirement is just a plain-English description of what is done with the information. However if all apps required formal, legal privacy policies, I'd be in real trouble. I absolutely can't afford a lawyer to draft up a legal document.

But the lawyers in congress are all for attorney full employment acts, so that all their law school buddies can rake in all the profits that would otherwise go to computer nerds and small developers. Why leave any money on the table for us non-lawyers? :eek:

JoeIdaho
May 25, 2011, 08:13 PM
Dear U.S. Senator Al Franken;

Any chance you could work on simplifying the 50 page iTunes agreement we have to accept every few weeks ???

Rock on !!

bladerunner88
May 25, 2011, 08:16 PM
The hypocrisy of my country is disgusting. We ask Apple and Google to tell users why their locations are tracked for FEATURES THEY SIGNED UP FOR, but then sign another 4 years of an unamended Patriot Act. Why are my politicians even paid to care about whether Angry Birds knows where I am? What a sad waste of tax dollars. Seriously, **** this place.

Could not agree more Getting all bent out of shape over Apple's App Store, but no worries when it comes to The Patriot Act and ATT handing over all your voice and Data to the NSA.....

"Oh man... the ******** piled up so fast in Vietnam, you needed wings to stay above it." Apocalypse Now....

MattInOz
May 25, 2011, 08:47 PM
But the lawyers in congress are all for attorney full employment acts, so that all their law school buddies can rake in all the profits that would otherwise go to computer nerds and small developers. Why leave any money on the table for us non-lawyers? :eek:

I thought the did that by allowing patents to be extended well beyond intent and ensure creative people never made a profit.

Wait... yes the App store has been skirting that aim. So I guess they need the two fronted attack.

Amazing Iceman
May 25, 2011, 09:55 PM
Our caring and concerned politicians pulling another undercover publicity stunt...
I wonder why...

jonnysods
May 25, 2011, 09:56 PM
What a joke. The politicians should force each other to write "clear and understandable" legislation that isn't 2,000 lines long the average isn't capable of comprehending. As always, hypocritical politicians getting in the way.

Agreed. I could hardly put the current powers that be in the transparent or accountable camp.

JAT
May 25, 2011, 10:00 PM
It means that now, unfortunately. It's why the federal government has absolute legislative authority.
And it's controlled by big business. Kind of a circle thing.

Now think about your 80 year old grandma receiving those burns. The woman was 79 when she got that surprise.
Both of my grandmas seemed smart enough (they've been gone awhile) not to grip hot coffee in a paper cup strongly between their thighs. There's a reason that settled out of court, legislating stupidity is stupid. If someone does something stupid in front of me, injuring himself, I'll feel sorry for the injury, but don't tell me it's my fault. I really wish people would stop quoting this dumb-ass case.

Mak47
May 25, 2011, 11:07 PM
The iPhone location warning should read as follows:

Your iPhone is equipped with special hardware that allows it to record your location for use by many popular applications. It is also a cellular telephone, which according to US law must have its location recorded and accessible to the various Federal, State and Local law enforcement agencies at all times. This has been effect for over 10 years and is nothing new. If anyone in Congress actually did their jobs and read legislation--they would already know this.

P.S. Al Franken is a moron.

iEvolution
May 26, 2011, 12:15 AM
Label: May cause drowsiness
Nytol sleeping pills

Label: This product may contain nuts
Peanut M&Ms

Label: This program may be able to locate your whereabouts (Al Frankin)
TomTom Navigation for iOS

We don't need additional warnings. We need people to become more personally aware for themselves:

You have a Cell Phone with a GPS chip in it and the phone contains memory? Well, one may conclude that there *could* be a possibility that the phone could log your location over time and store it somewhere in memory for later use. If you are paranoid, toggle location services off.

Should a coffee cup have really need warning for you that the contents may be hot?

Unfortunately there are a lot of idiots out there, for instance Benadryl GEL/CREAM was recalled because they had a couple hundred cases of people EATING it so they had to add a new label to the top that says "DO NOT EAT".

ChrisA
May 26, 2011, 12:35 AM
A problem is that developers use a framework that Apple provides. They can't really know the side effects of any API call they make. For example the location data that was saved. Developers would not know about it.

Most developers are small time outfits, many with no formal training oi security or even computer science. I think most of them could try and write a policy but many simply can't do a good job of it.

ChrisA
May 26, 2011, 12:50 AM
And it's controlled by big business. Kind of a circle thing.

Both of my grandmas seemed smart enough (they've been gone awhile) not to grip hot coffee in a paper cup strongly between their thighs. There's a reason that settled out of court, ...

Coffee typically is brewed at about 180F and served at about 160F. But some managers cheat. They want to slow down customer requests for re-fills so they serve it hotter than company policy allows. The woman was given an insulated cup with coffee that was over 200F. This was in direct violation of company standards an it was not a "normal" cup of coffee a customer would expect.

When you know this fact it is easy to see why it was and easy case because the jury would have been instructed to answer a few questions like

1) Did the manager know there was a danger? (yes of course he was trained about the proper severing temperature)

2) Could he have done something to correct it (Yes of course.)

3) did he make a decision NOT to correct it (yes of course)

Northgrove
May 26, 2011, 02:01 AM
I like how a Senator can ask a company to simply be honest with their customers and it somehow sets off the MacRumors community as an unreasonable outrage.

What a place we got here, huh?

They aren't being honest?

http://theilife.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/05/iphonebeta5a292g.gif

This whole thing is puzzling to me...

How much more clear can they be?

If this is about the recent case of "Apple tracking", it wasn't tracking, since the info wasn't sent anywhere and it was just an approximation of your position to help the GPS in picking up your location more quickly. If it's about tracking and sending the info - you are already informed!

gnasher729
May 26, 2011, 04:33 AM
Most of these are either born out of litigation from some nitwit who spills a cup of coffee in a lap and believes a great injustice has been done because McDonalds hadn't warned her that Coffee was HOT!, or through some advocate in Congress that believes that the public is too stupid to think for themselves, thus requiring disclosure for every little thing.

And _you_ are calling people "nitwits"? If I make a cup of coffee at home and spill it, I will say "ouch that's hot". This woman got coffee from McDonald's that caused third degree burns.

McDonald's offered free refills for coffee. So if a customer ordered coffee, drank it, got another one, drank it, got another one, that would cut into profits. McDonald's solved that little problem by serving coffee that would be far too hot for human consumption for fifteen minutes, so people wouldn't ask for free refills. Before this case, McDonald's had already settled for unknown amounts in seven hundred cases, so there was clearly a pattern of McDonald's intentionally putting the health of customers at risk for profit.

Of course a label "Warning: Coffee is hot" doesn't solve that problem, and doesn't absolve a company from every responsibility. That particular problem is solved by serving coffee at a normal temperature. You couldn't run electricity in uninsulated wires, put up a warning, and get away with it.

In other words, McDonald's didn't get done for not putting up warning signs. They did get done for intentionally, knowingly creating a health risk far beyond the normal accepted risk, in order to increase profits.


Unfortunately there are a lot of idiots out there, for instance Benadryl GEL/CREAM was recalled because they had a couple hundred cases of people EATING it so they had to add a new label to the top that says "DO NOT EAT".

People make mistakes. Good design steers people away from mistakes, bad design steers them towards mistakes. So how come Benadryl had to be recalled, and other products didn't? Could bad design be a factor?

Back to the subject of this thread: I don't want "clear privacy policies". I want my privacy to be respected. I also don't want mouth-foaming idiots complaining about perceived privacy violations that aren't privacy violations at all at all. And I'd want politicians to educate themselves first and not trying to get on some mission to score points.

Beaverfish
May 26, 2011, 06:35 AM
What a joke. The politicians should force each other to write "clear and understandable" legislation that isn't 2,000 lines long the average isn't capable of comprehending. As always, hypocritical politicians getting in the way.

I completely agree

d0minick
May 26, 2011, 06:38 AM
What's next? A Federal Software Agency?

We did fine for decades without one, but I guess here it comes.

Personal computing has only been popular for about a decade and a half, and still I think we are stretching. So to say we have been fine for decades with out one is a pretty off statement.

And now that everything is being saved on data centers that belong to companies, consumers need a regulating agency more then ever.

No system, non-regulating and regulating will be perfect, and one type of genre(lack of a better word) will not necessarily be better for another. But I do think an agency would work, if made correctly and properly funded from the ground up. Or you can trust for profit companies with your data.

janstett
May 26, 2011, 06:44 AM
What a joke. The politicians should force each other to write "clear and understandable" legislation that isn't 2,000 lines long the average isn't capable of comprehending. As always, hypocritical politicians getting in the way.

"We have to pass [the 2700-page health care] bill so that you can, uh, find out what's in it." -- Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House

I say developers should adopt that nonsense -- you have to install the app to find out what you agreed to.

I like how a Senator can ask a company to simply be honest with their customers and it somehow sets off the MacRumors community as an unreasonable outrage.


I guess government doesn't like competition in monitoring people?

MorphingDragon
May 26, 2011, 06:52 AM
It's only going to take one good event involving a data breach or personal information breach due to lack of digital privacy/security before the public really starts demanding that something be done to protect them from malicious programmers.

So the PSN cracking where millions of SSNs, addresses, names and credit card details were compromised was a figment of my imagination. Pretty sure that classifies as a major breach and all Sony got was a slap on the wrist.

Nothing can protect you from malicious intent, only slow it down.

Island Dog
May 26, 2011, 07:59 AM
A democrat wanting to regulate something else and interfere with business. Wow, didn't see that coming.... /sarc

MarcelV
May 26, 2011, 08:02 AM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_2_8 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8E401 Safari/6533.18.5)

@WestonHarvey1 "I don't consider regulating software to be one of those things. That's far better left to developers and consumers."

Just like the cigarette industry, oil companies, health insurers regulating themselves? Yeah, great idea. It worked so well in those industries.

conceptually, there is nothing wrong with to know what the program does, what data it shares and where it is used for. Practically, not sure how this can be implemented in a non-intrusive clean way, eliminating annoyance to the end user.

jimothyGator
May 26, 2011, 08:15 AM
I like how a Senator can ask a company to simply be honest with their customers and it somehow sets off the MacRumors community as an unreasonable outrage.

What a place we got here, huh?

Perhaps the outrage isn't so unreasonable. When politicians participate in the hypocrisy of "protecting" consumers' privacy from companies they voluntarily engage in business with while simultaneously allowing further privacy violations by government—where interaction is not voluntary and where we cannot realistically opt-out—the whole thing comes across as little more than insincere grandstanding.

Franken may be "asking" today, but how soon before he's demanding via legislation and further power grab by government?

jimothyGator
May 26, 2011, 08:28 AM
What are you talking about?

Right now companies like Google totally own us. You're asking me to believe that if congress wrestles a little bit of that control away it'll be a bad thing for me?

"Freedom?" Please. Don't tell me I have freedom just so you can act like a patriot or George Washington or something. The opposite of "the government owns you" isn't freedom. No, it's "a company owns you." Pick one or the other, I don't care, but don't try and tell me that "freedom" is some magical 3rd option.

I don't know about you, but Google sure as hell doesn't own me. I can choose to use Google's products and services, or not. I can choose to instead use a competitors products and services.

Where's my choice in government? I don't support bombing and killing Middle Easterners, but I can't opt-out and not pay for this wasteful slaughter. I don't support locking people up because they've chosen to buy or sell pot, but again, I can't opt-out of having my money taken to pay for these violations of people's freedom.

If Apple or Google, or any other company, receive my money, it's because I feel they've earned it. I make that decision. When the government receives my money, it's not because I feel the services they provide are all worth it, but because I have no choice. The money is taken from me; I do not voluntarily give it.

No, Google doesn't own me at all, and they don't own you, either.

jimothyGator
May 26, 2011, 08:37 AM
Of course the issue in Wickard v Filburn is whether his actions had an effect on interstate commerce. The federal interest was because they were trying to keep the entire farm economy from collapsing and causing a complete social breakdown. A drop in wheat prices would have had a tidal effect throughout the ag economy, especially in the late 30's. Filburn said he was growing it for his own use, but he was planting more acreage than he was allowed, and the feds determined that he was affecting commerce because the wheat prices would drop if that grain went to market. Prior restraint? Maybe. The feds may have been right, though. 20-20 hindsight and all. Not a simple issue at all.

Farming in general has always had kind of protected status in our economy because we can't under any circumstances allow a farm economy to crumble and starve the population, of which about 97% are non-farmers, and unable to feed themselves. And no seed stock for that backyard garden you think would tide you over.

Thank goodness that, during the Great Depression when people were standing in breadlines and starving, that the Federal Government had the brilliance to set wheat production and acreage quotas, order crops destroyed, and prevent farmers from growing their own food. One can only imagine the horror people would have faced if they weren't spared from the atrocity of affordable food.

toddybody
May 26, 2011, 08:39 AM
Disclaimer clarity is always important, and I'm 100% in favor of legislation that protects consumers accordingly...that said, the senate isn't mandating anything as of yet.

Gasu E.
May 26, 2011, 08:46 AM
And it's controlled by big business. Kind of a circle thing.

Both of my grandmas seemed smart enough (they've been gone awhile) not to grip hot coffee in a paper cup strongly between their thighs. There's a reason that settled out of court, legislating stupidity is stupid. If someone does something stupid in front of me, injuring himself, I'll feel sorry for the injury, but don't tell me it's my fault. I really wish people would stop quoting this dumb-ass case.

I received second degree burns on my MOUTH from McDonald's coffee before they turned the temperature down. No, I didn't sue. I guess I was too dumb not to know that I should put hot coffee in my MOUTH. :rolleyes: I admit I WAS dumb in that this happened to me 2-3 times before I learned my lesson and stopped drinking McD's coffee.

michaelsviews
May 26, 2011, 08:46 AM
What a joke. The politicians should force each other to write "clear and understandable" legislation that isn't 2,000 lines long the average isn't capable of comprehending. As always, hypocritical politicians getting in the way.

You took the words right out of my mouth, is he up for re-election? or what ?

Like our elected officials really give a hoot about Apple and Google collecting information.........

What a farce, another Dog & Pony show

mingoglia
May 26, 2011, 08:59 AM
What a joke. The politicians should force each other to write "clear and understandable" legislation that isn't 2,000 lines long the average isn't capable of comprehending. As always, hypocritical politicians getting in the way.

Couldn't agree more.

farmboy
May 26, 2011, 09:02 AM
Thank goodness that, during the Great Depression when people were standing in breadlines and starving, that the Federal Government had the brilliance to set wheat production and acreage quotas, order crops destroyed, and prevent farmers from growing their own food. One can only imagine the horror people would have faced if they weren't spared from the atrocity of affordable food.

Atrocity? Unfortunately for your premise, at the time of this case, 1941 or so, crops had been good enough for several years so that markets were full of food. The lean times were the first few years of the 1930's. Even then, starvation was quite rare, although being hungry among the less well off was not.

Historically, food costs in the US are well below the average compared to other industrialized nations. That was the case back then as well.

PeterQVenkman
May 26, 2011, 09:15 AM
There's a reason that settled out of court, legislating stupidity is stupid. If someone does something stupid in front of me, injuring himself, I'll feel sorry for the injury, but don't tell me it's my fault.

McDonald's settled after (1) rejecting the initial reasonable proposed amount of $20,000 and then (2) being publicly obliterated in court and made to look like callous *******s. They settled specifically to keep from having the outcome made public.

McDonalds asserted that customers buy coffee on their way to work or home, intending to consume it there. However, the companys own research showed that customers intend to consume the coffee immediately while driving.

McDonalds' quality assurance manager testified that a burn hazard exists with any food substance served at 140 degrees or above, and that McDonalds coffee, at the temperature at which it was poured into styrofoam cups, was not fit for consumption because it would burn the mouth and throat. The quality assurance manager admitted that burns would occur, but testified that McDonalds had no intention of reducing the "holding temperature" of its coffee.

The judge called McDonalds' conduct "reckless, callous and willful."

McDonalds has since changed the holding temp of their coffee to around 150 degrees. You don't hear about people suing them anymore over coffee burns, either.

I really wish people would stop quoting this dumb-ass case.

Hey, I didn't bring it up. I don't think people should quote it either, especially when people like you don't understand it. We've all spilled things or had things spilled on us at restaurants. Few of us have been hospitalized for a week because of it.

farmboy
May 26, 2011, 09:16 AM
Lexington (where the British first shot at and killed colonial minutemen on the town common) and Concord (where the colonial minutemen first shot at and killed British soldiers at the old north bridge) are adjoining towns IN MASSACHUSETTS. Each claims to be the location of the shot heard round the world, and it depends on whether you think the outrage of the British firing on colonists or the colonists being ballsy enough to shoot back later that morning is what the rest of the world took notice of. If you are going to try and sound smart, get your geography right.

Good god! Read a paper once in a while. Reference was to Bachmann's statements, not mine. I'm quite familiar with geography and history, but not her--and she wants desperately to be the Republican nominee for the presidency. I thought the joke was obvious, but apparently not to some people.

MattInOz
May 26, 2011, 06:10 PM
Back to the subject of this thread: I don't want "clear privacy policies". I want my privacy to be respected. I also don't want mouth-foaming idiots complaining about perceived privacy violations that aren't privacy violations at all at all. And I'd want politicians to educate themselves first and not trying to get on some mission to score points.

Hey I agree long wordy stupid privacy statements do nothing if the company has no intent of respecting that privacy. It really just gives them a chance to hide in plain sight what they plan to do. It gives them more defense than us. What would really help us in creating trust with a company is more information.

At the moment on iOS at least the it's a blanket choice but the developer can choose between three distinct types of location notification types. Once they have blanket use they can change at will. If an app is only asking for a low level of location accuracy they should be able to tell the user that and the system should only let them receive that. Put the user back in control.

Gasu E.
May 26, 2011, 09:13 PM
My Senator Franken is a joke and a hypocrite. Privacy? What about the "Patriot" Act dear Senator?

Franken voted against (http://politics.nytimes.com/congress/votes/112/senate/1/84?ref=us) the extension of the Patriot Act. Why do you find that hypocritical?

PeterQVenkman
May 27, 2011, 01:46 AM
Franken voted against (http://politics.nytimes.com/congress/votes/112/senate/1/84?ref=us) the extension of the Patriot Act. Why do you find that hypocritical?

Whoa, wait a minute. Keep reality out of this, OK?

;)

caspersoong
May 27, 2011, 08:08 AM
Google will have a tougher time than Apple. :D

SkyStudios
May 27, 2011, 09:02 AM
Whoa, wait a minute. Keep reality out of this, OK?

;)

He actually a honest man, bases his judgement accordingly, so is Steve Jobbs, regardless of vague comments, there is always two sides to every story, what has been taken place appears to be sort of cherry picking, apple should of not been directly involved, but they sold hardware which uput them alike google, in the hot seat with their phones, google is is a mess with PayPal now.

croooow
May 27, 2011, 09:18 AM
http://img263.imageshack.us/img263/5589/alfrankenbunnyweb.jpg

This is the guy we should be taking seriously on any public issue? Really? ;)

Hagrid
May 27, 2011, 09:57 AM
franken, who has voted for two bills that are now law, both of which gut privacy protections for health care information, can shove his demands for privacy where the sun don't shine.

In fact, why the hell is the attorney general not launching an investigation into these senators who think they can violate the first amendment by dictating to apple what they do and don't publish on the appstore?

Violations of anyones constitutional rights is a felony under usc 18-242.

(the two bills were the "stimulus" bill which had very little to do with actually stimulating the economy, but does require hospitals to turn over all health care info to the federal government and obamacare which turns all health information over tie the irs.)

+100

JAT
May 27, 2011, 10:18 AM
Hey, I didn't bring it up. I don't think people should quote it either, especially when people like you don't understand it. We've all spilled things or had things spilled on us at restaurants. Few of us have been hospitalized for a week because of it.

I do understand it, I apparently have a different opinion of it. Perhaps you don't think that possible? Get over yourself.

She did something stupid, and "the public" blamed a company because that is easy, and faceless. People avoid confrontation mostly, and their opinions mirror that. Plus, they don't like to blame themselves, so they join the side of anyone trying to avoid blaming themselves. They think it makes them more "human".

I guess a realist like me just looks at what really happened. I can't even imagine putting any temp coffee between my legs. Ever. What if it burned me? :rolleyes: