Protecting personal information online – do young people get it?

Our Commissioner, Jennifer Stoddart is worried that maybe they don’t. After conducting an investigation into Facebook’s privacy policies, we’re now turning our attention to youth as the school year gets underway. Because while they may be savvy about using social media, many of them still may not know how to create a secure online identity.

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We’re launching our 2009 My Privacy & Me Video Contest!

We have exciting news that we hope you will share with your children, students, neighbours – whoever! We’re launching our 2009 My Privacy & Me National Video Competition for youth! Again, we’re asking 12- to 18-year-olds to create their own public service announcements on the issue of privacy. The videos should between 60 and 120 seconds long, and speak to other young people about how important privacy is. They can record the videos, animate them – present them however they like. And as long as the focus is on some aspect of personal privacy they can make it about whatever they want.

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Check out the seven finalist videos from our youth video contest!

The deadline has passed, the videos are in and we have seven finalist videos from our 2008 My Privacy & Me National Video Competition for young people. Watch these videos and you’ll see how young people took our instructions to heart. These videos cover a wide-range of privacy topics and can easily be used as public service announcements. They communicate many different privacy messages and were shot in a variety of formats, from claymation to animation to staged skits. Most importantly, each video conveys the importance of personal privacy.

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Do you enjoy being watched?

The author of a new article on surveillance in The Walrus thinks you do. Hal Niedzviecki says that while the thought of being monitored used to disturb us (think George Orwell and Nineteen Eighty-Four), cameras and other surveillance techniques are so prevalent today that we’ve stopped noticing them. And, he says, when we do notice we don’t really care (case in point: when it was announced that 10,000 cameras would be installed in Toronto’s subways, streetcars and buses, he asserts that citizens “shrugged and went about their business”).

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