Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Data Privacy Matters: Terms and Conditions May Apply documentary screening schedule

Admit it: you don't really read the endless terms and conditions connected to every Web site you visit.  But every day, billion-dollar corporations are learning more about your interests, your friends and family, your finances, and your secrets . . . and are not only selling the information to the highest bidder, but freely sharing it with the government.  And you agreed to all of it.  

Learn more at a special viewing of the serious but entertaining Terms and Conditions May Apply documentary.

Terms and Conditions May Apply screening schedule:
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
John B. Davis Auditorium, Ruth Stricker Dayton Campus Center
11:45 AM (approximately 60 minutes running time)
6:45 PM (approximately 80 minutes running time)
A brief Q&A facilitated by staff from the Library and ITS follows each screening.

The title is unlikely to excite, but the content of this quietly blistering documentary should rile even the most passive viewer. Investigating our casual surrender of privacy rights every time we click the “Agree” button on those dense (and typically unread) online user contracts, the director Cullen Hoback outlines the real-life dangers of digital heedlessness. As the film illustrates, a random tweet or innocent Google search could summon a SWAT team to your door or transform you into a suspected terrorist. 

Actual horror stories aside, this concise and lively summary of the many ways corporations, law enforcement and government agencies gather, share and use our information — assisted by digital giants like AT&T and Google — is creepily unnerving. 

Lightening the mood with clips from South Park and Minority Report (being arrested precrime is no longer science fiction), Mr. Hoback shows how digital executives like Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook actively guard their own privacy while playing fast and loose with ours. Perfectly timed to coincide with the Edward J. Snowden brouhaha, Terms and Conditions May Apply wonders if our right to privacy has been lost forever. And, perhaps more saliently, if anyone cares. 

This screening is brought to you as part of Data Privacy Month, an annual effort by the National Cyber Security Alliance in conjunction with Educause, running through February 28. The goal is to empower people to protect their privacy and control their digital footprint, as well as escalate the protection of privacy and data as everyone's priority.

Note:  Substantial portions of this message derived from original reviews in the New York Times and Rotten Tomatoes.

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