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Google Australia Privacy

New Australian Privacy Laws Could Have Ramifications On Google Glass 128

An anonymous reader writes "Recording private conversations or activities using Google's Glass eyewear or similar wearable technologies without consent could become illegal under a push to overhaul Australian state and federal privacy laws. From the article: 'The Australian Law Reform Commission discussion paper, released on Monday morning, recommended 47 legislative changes aimed at updating existing privacy laws for the digital age. It proposed the government introduce a statutory cause of action for a serious invasion of one’s privacy, in what would be the first time a person’s privacy has legally been protected in Australia. It also recommended harmonising rules for using technology to monitor and record authors, which are currently legislated by state governments, to deal with the implications of new technologies such as wearable devices and drones.'"
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New Australian Privacy Laws Could Have Ramifications On Google Glass

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  • Re:not private (Score:5, Informative)

    by mjwx ( 966435 ) on Monday March 31, 2014 @04:33AM (#46619127)

    Google Glass only records from a first person point of view, and is less sensitive than normal human eyes or ears. So, pretty much by definition, if it can be recorded by Google Glass, it isn't private: the person doing the recording needs to be visibly present to record the information.

    Australia is considerably more laid back about public recordings. Currently laws cover publication/syndication rather than recordings. So you can within reason record things in public (including the police) but publishing them without consent is another thing. For example, if I were pulled over and recorded a conversation with a police officer on my dashcam (which is in plain sight) that could be used as evidence to defend myself in court thats fine, but If I publish that video on YouTube, I've done wrong.

    Laws on recording private conversations vary from state to state but many police forces in Australia have commented that they don't mind being recorded in public.

    But the article is a fluff piece from the AFR (Fairfax media) and the laws haven't be implemented or passed by parliament. In fact they haven't even been introduced into parliament. They're just a proposal from a commission that boils down to nothing more than political grandstanding. It's been a slow news day since Fairfax supports the current government and can only report on the good things they've done.... It's been a slow news day for them since the Abbott government was elected.

  • Re:not private (Score:4, Informative)

    by Truth_Quark ( 219407 ) on Monday March 31, 2014 @05:29AM (#46619275) Journal

    Not necessarily. We already have a similar law in place. It's illegal to videotape you, make pictures of you or record you in any other way unless you give prior consent, unless you are a "person of public interest", i.e. a celebrity, a politician or similar.

    Not in Australia.

    You are able to make any recording of anyone so long as you do it from public property with a very few particular exceptions.

    • You need to obtain consent to use it for commercial purpose
    • You need to obtain consent if the person is undressed or engaged in a private act, and they're in circumstances where a reasonable person would reasonably expect to be afforded privacy, and you're taking the photo for sexual gratification
    • You can't take an indecent photograph of someone under 16. (That's with or without consent, and unlike the two above, this one is criminal).

    There's laws against workplace surveillance by employers, and there are laws against peeping and against being a public nuisance, which means interfering with someone else's enjoyment of a public place, but broadly speaking, if you can see it, you can photograph it.

What is research but a blind date with knowledge? -- Will Harvey