Privacy as Personality Right: Why the ECtHR's Focus on Ulterior Interests Might Prove Indispensable in the Age of 'Big Data'

Utrecht Journal of International and European Law, Vol. 31, No. 80, pp.25-50, February 2015

26 Pages Posted: 11 Jul 2015

See all articles by Bart van der Sloot

Bart van der Sloot

Tilburg University - Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology, and Society (TILT)

Date Written: February 27, 2015

Abstract

Article 8 ECHR was adopted as a classic negative right, which provides the citizen protection from unlawful and arbitrary interference by the state with his private and family life, home and communication. The ECtHR, however, has gradually broadened its scope so that the right to privacy encroaches upon other provisions embodied in the Convention, includes rights and freedoms explicitly left out of the ECHR by the drafters of the Convention and functions as the main pillar on which the Court has built its practice of opening up the Convention for new rights and freedoms. Consequently, Article 8 ECHR has been transformed from a classic privacy right to a personality right, providing protection to the personal development of individuals. Apart from its theoretical significance, this shift might prove indispensable in the age of Big Data, as personality rights protect a different type of interest, which is far more easy to substantiate in the new technological paradigm than those associated with the right to privacy.

Keywords: privacy; Big data

Suggested Citation

van der Sloot, Bart, Privacy as Personality Right: Why the ECtHR's Focus on Ulterior Interests Might Prove Indispensable in the Age of 'Big Data' (February 27, 2015). Utrecht Journal of International and European Law, Vol. 31, No. 80, pp.25-50, February 2015, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2629118

Bart Van der Sloot (Contact Author)

Tilburg University - Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology, and Society (TILT) ( email )

P.O.Box 90153
Prof. Cobbenhagenlaan 221
Tilburg, 5037
Netherlands

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