[ppml] News Article on IP addresses as personal data, according to EU privacy group

Ted Mittelstaedt tedm at ipinc.net
Tue Jan 22 13:07:54 EST 2008

In the context of search engines, which is a completely different issue than what
we are talking about here.  Bzzzt - thank you, play again.

The reason that this is an issue with search engines is that it ties a name to
what they are searching for.  It is the same issue as if the public library were
to record a history of all books that you checked out and associate it with
your library card number, which was then tied to your phone number, and then
sold the information to the highest bidder - as Google currently does.

But nobody is out there arguing that all telephone numbers should be regarded
as private information.

I think you need to re-read the article.  You might also consider that this guy they
are quoting is Germany's data-protection comissioner, and that Germany does not
have the same Bill of Rights that guarentees free speech as the US.  In Germany
you are not allowed to say and publish what you please, as you are in the US.  The
German government is used to censorship and keeping secrets, and it's understandable
that they don't like it when Google tries shining the light of publicity on things.

Note this isn't an argument in favor of Google's position.  It's an attempt to get
you to take into account regional predjustices before you go throwing around
articles with no contextual highlighting.

In short, this article isn't authoratative by any means.

  -----Original Message-----
  From: ppml-bounces at arin.net [mailto:ppml-bounces at arin.net]On Behalf Of heather skanks
  Sent: Tuesday, January 22, 2008 9:51 AM
  To: ppml at arin.net
  Subject: [ppml] News Article on IP addresses as personal data,according to EU privacy group

  "By Aoife White
  Associated Press 
  Tuesday, January 22, 2008; Page D01 

  BRUSSELS -- IP addresses, strings of numbers that identify computers on the Internet, should generally be regarded as personal information, the head of the European Union's group of data privacy regulators said Monday."

  Full article at:


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