Towards an Equality-Enhancing Conception of Privacy
Jane Bailey, "Towards An Equality-Enhancing Conception of Privacy", 31(2) Dalhousie Law Journal 267 (2008)
44 Pages Posted: 19 Jun 2013
Date Written: 2008
Canadian jurisprudence has explicitly recognized the impact of child pornography on the privacy rights of the children abused in its production. In contrast, it has generally not analyzed other forms of harmful expression, such as hate propaganda and obscenity, to be violations of the privacy rights of those targeted. In a previous article, the author suggested that this distinction in the jurisprudence reflected the relative ease with which the privacy interests of the individual children whose abuse is documented in child pornography meshed with the prevalent Western approach to privacy as a negative individual liberty against intrusion. Noting the historic role that the individualistic conception of privacy has played in perpetuating inequality, the author suggests that reliance on the prevailing paradigm is unlikely to prove useful in advancing the lived substantive equality of those targeted by hate, child pornography and obscenity. However, before the advancement of privacy claims by targeted members of equality-seeking communities is abandoned, the potential for revising the paradigmatic Western account of privacy should be explored. The author invokes the alternative accounts of privacy developed by Oscar Gandy, Priscilla Regan, and Julie Cohen, who analyze the implications of widespread digital data collection, aggregation, and social profiling. Their work may provide ways of fashioning an account of privacy intrinsically tied to producing substantive equality for groups targeted by and in hate propaganda, obscenity and child pornography, one which may also assist equality-seeking groups more generally.
Keywords: Canadian jurisprudence, child pornography, children abused in production, hate propaganda, obscenity, privacy, inequality, equality-seeking communities, Oscar Gandy, Priscilla Regan, Julie Cohen
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