Do Young People Care About Privacy?

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4 Responses

  1. ninja says:

    yes i agree. young people are just subtle about information in a different way than older people. sharing information is about how you share it, not what you’re sharing. young people can be pretty cagey. You can be naive at any age. So anyone can find herself stalked as easily as someone else can find himself out money if they share the wrong information.

  2. dave hoffman says:

    Wouldn’t evidence of people’s actual behavior be a better piece of evidence than these survey results? If their behavior (w/r/t, say, Facebook information) contrasts with these findings, which are we to believe?

  3. Daniel Solove says:


    Behavioral data isn’t necessarily better, as there are many things that can skew behavior. People often have mistaken assumptions about how websites protect their privacy (they think they have a lot more privacy protection than they do). And what does sharing data on Facebook mean? It might mean that a person doesn’t expect privacy. It might mean that the person expects it to be shared with her friends only and views it as a privacy violation to have it shared more widely. It might mean that the person expects it to be shared with her friends and not used by Facebook or others for other purposes.

    In other contexts, people aren’t aware of the extent to which they are sharing information. Or they are aware but feel they don’t have much of a choice in how their data is used.

    So interpreting the behavior and what it indicates about attitudes can be quite difficult. Of course, surveys about attitudes are also prone to error, for people can readily say things but not do them.

    I’m not saying looking at surveys is better than looking at behavior — both are prone to error.