BILETA 2008 : Morning Notes

Hello from the BILETA (British and Irish Law, Education and Technology Association) annual conference at Glasgow Caledonian University in lovely, rainy Scotland. The conference (agenda, abstracts etc available here) is taking place today and tomorrow. I’m speaking about ‘Expression 2.0‘ tomorrow afternoon.

This morning, I popped into a talk by Dr. Carlisle George (Middlesex) on SABAM v Tiscali (very similar to our own EMI v Eircom case) and then to a session on privacy with Karen McCullagh (Salford) and Kevin Rogers (Hertfordshire). Karen reported on her research on perceptions of privacy among bloggers (also discussed here and just published in Information and Communications Technology Law, here), while Kevin discussed recent UK decisions interpreting (rather narrowly) the Data Protection Act : Durant v Financial Services Authority, Johnson v Medical Defence Union, Ezsias v Welsh Ministers, and looked forward to Common Services Agency v Scottish Ministers in the House of Lords next week. In the question-and-answer session, the discussion looked at privacy vs data protection, statutory rights and human rights, British v European approaches and more – stopping for lunch after a while, though!

We started the day with two provocative keynote addresses by David Wall (Leeds) and David Flint (MacRoberts, solicitors). David the First spoke about cybercrime and wondered in particular why there had been so few convictions; his ‘three generations of cybercrime’ were very useful (traditional, hybrid and ‘true’). He has a book on cybercrime and there’s more about all that in there. The second David spoke about social networking, privacy and more, in a very entertaining way, also raising interesting questions like the ‘responsibility to protect’ (users) that should be attached to sites like Facebook.

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