The Ugliness of Privacy Notices

by on November 4, 2009 · 8 comments

I have ranted once or twice before about the regulatory requirement that Google—a search engine—post a link to a privacy notice on its home page.

Not all computers all places may see it, but Google appears to be experimenting with a bit of javascript that leaves the page blank but for the Google image and the search field until you roll your cursor over it. But they’re leaving the privacy notice (and a copyright notice) there, probably for fear that privacy advocates will yelp about a modern-day paperwork violation.

This provides an opportunity to see the difference between a world with privacy notice regulation and one without. One is cluttered and overlawyered. The other is pure and clean and fresh.

Take a look for yourself. Which do you prefer?



Or this?


I think the answer is obvious. The only difference, mind you, is aesthetic. If Google were permitted to have a truly good looking Web site, users’ privacy would be no worse off for it because they don’t read privacy notices.

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