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How Public Should Public Records Be? 175

Posted by michael
from the you-too-can-be-a-stalker dept.
Hobobo writes: "This article on the New York Times talks about whether public records that are available in local government offices should or shouldn't be available online. It also talks about the "practical obscurity" of people checking files in police offices and whatnot, and public records on the internet are "too public," and the privacy and freedom of information issues involved." If you'd like to try it, you can use "Giuliani" and "5/28/44".
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How Public Should Public Records Be?

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  • Ooops! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Pete (big-pete) (253496) <> on Friday August 24, 2001 @08:13AM (#2212714)

    I just went to the site ( []) and in the section entitled "What others are saying:" was the following...

    JANE B, on 60 STREET says, "Please remove my name (Jane S. Brody, Woodside, dob 7/4/47) from your site IMMEDIATELY (i.e., this morning, Friday, August 24). AND PLEASE DO NOT POST MY COMMENTS ON YOUR SITE. Your site, for all your good intentions, is a serious invation of privacy (for one thing, if you have a person's birthday but are not sure of the year, you can now find out the year; also you can now determine anybody's party affiliation). You would be well advised to shut your site down, at least for several days, and redesign it. By the way, why did you choose a person's birthday as the identifier? Would social security number be safer? No one that I know of (besides myself, my bank, my employer, etc.) has that information. Thank you for your immediate attention to this matter."

    I think that demonstrates exactly how much they respect the wishes of the citizens of NY...

    -- Pete.

  • by moogla (118134) on Friday August 24, 2001 @09:04AM (#2212875) Homepage Journal
    If you visit the website [] now, you might notice that you get redirected to the EFF []. Apparently when you post comments, it doesn't check what you type in. A few lines of javascript later (hehe), and the site looks like it's h4x0r3d.

    Great job e-ThePeople []!
    Great job.

... though his invention worked superbly -- his theory was a crock of sewage from beginning to end. -- Vernor Vinge, "The Peace War"