"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power." - Thomas Jefferson 1820

"There is a growing technology of testing that permits us now to do in nanoseconds things that we shouldn't be doing at all." - Dr. Gerald Bracey author of Rotten Apples in Education

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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Where's the "Do-Not-Track Common Core Data Act of 2013?"

Jay Rockefeller introduced a "no tracking" bill (Do-Not-Track Online Act of 2013) to "prescribe regulations regarding the collection and use of personal information obtained by tracking the online activity of an individual, and for other purposes." 

From calpirg.org and Free Cookies-Strings Attached:
Recently West Virginia’s Senator John D. Rockefeller, Chairman of the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee,  proposed the Do-Not-Track Online Act of 2013. The bill would require the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to establish standards allowing internet users to set their web browsers to tell websites, advertising networks, data brokers and other online entities that they do not want to be tracked online for commercial data mining. The bill would also instruct the FTC to draft rules to enforce users’ requests to opt out of such tracking. The bill largely follows the recommendations of a recent FTC Report, which stated that the commission seeks “implementation of an easy-to-use, persistent, and effective Do Not Track system.”

It is time for lawmakers to debate and pass robust Do-Not-Track legislation to protect consumers. The Rockefeller proposal offers a good start toward that debate.

The Obama Administration in December 2012 took action to protect children from internet data mining.  From yahoo.com and Changes in law aim to protect kids' online data:

Aiming to prevent companies from exploiting online information about children under 13, the Obama administration on Wednesday imposed sweeping changes in regulations designed to protect a young generation with easy access to the Internet.

Two years in the making, the amended rules to the decade-old Children's Online Privacy Protection Act go into effect in July. Privacy advocates said the changes were long overdue in an era of cellphones, tablets, social networking services and online stores with cellphone apps aimed at kids for as little as 99 cents.

Siphoning details of children's personal lives — their physical location, contact information, names of friends and more — from their Internet activities can be highly valuable to advertisers, marketers and data brokers.

As evidence of online risks, the FTC last week said it was investigating an unspecified number of software developers that may have illegally gathered information without the consent of parents.

Under the changes to the law, known as COPPA, information about children that cannot be collected unless a parent first gives permission now includes the location data that a cellphone generates, as well as photos, videos and audio files containing a human image or voice.

The Congressional Bipartisan Privacy Caucus commended the FTC for writing the new rules. "Keeping kids safe on the Internet is as important as ensuring their safety in schools, in homes, in cars," caucus co-chairman Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., said at a Capitol Hill news conference.

It is commendable that the Obama Administration, Senator Rockefeller, Representative Markey and the FTC want to protect children's privacy on the Internet.

Does this concern extend to children's privacy on their educational data?  Is the Obama Administration, Senator Rockefeller, Representative Markey and the FTC concerned at all about the 3,000 data points gathered on each student and his/her teachers via Common Core and shared with federal agencies and private organizations?

We would suggest the Obama Administration, The Congressional Bipartisan Privacy Caucus and Senator Rockefeller investigate the data mining allowable on students due to the revisions (not legislative changes) to the FERPA regulations promoted by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.

The information/data gathered on their children just because they attend a public school is being distributed to unknown parties without the consent of parents.  Why is Internet privacy being safeguarded but not educational privacy?  

As the FTC chairman commented:

"You may not track children to build massive profiles," he said.

Well, that's exactly what's happening in the data mining on students via Common Core.  What's the difference between internet data mining and CCSS data mining?  


  1. Who are the two Conservative candidates running for Board Director?

  2. Elaine,

    To which election are you referring?


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