Academic speaks at 14th Austrian Media Forum on ‘Recapturing Privacy’

Ms. Judith Rauhofer was invited to speak to representatives of the Austrian radio, TV and online media industry as part of the 14th Austrian Media Forum (Österreichisches Rundfunkforum), which took place in Vienna on 18/19 October 2018.

Organised by the Forschungsinstitut Recht Elektronischer Massenmedien (Institute for the Law Governing Electronic Mass Media), the Forum focused on issues surrounding “Privacy and the Media”.Ms Rauhofer’s talk on ‘Recapturing Privacy’ specifically looked at the data protection strategies used by individuals when faced with requests for the collection and use of their personal data, in particular, in online environments. She asked how the law can support individuals using avoidance, data minimisation, pseudonimisation and other methods to reduce the impact of data processing operations on their own lives.

In this context, she also sought to expand the current understanding of ‘privacy harms’ as immediate and direct damage suffered only by the relevant data subjects, towards a more holistic concept that includes collective, group or social harms that can arise from individuals’ privacy trade-offs.

Ms Rauhofer called for a legal framework that goes beyond data protection law to prevent the establishment of, and, ideally, reverse, technical infrastructures that encode those harms for the future into new and existing business models.

The ideas promoted in the talk will form the basis of a book chapter that will be published in an edited collection ‘Privacy and the Media’ by the Forschungsinstitut Recht Elektronischer Massenmedien in the first half of 2019.