John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Congress Questions iOS Developers on Privacy, Data Collection

As part of its inquiry into Apple’s consumer privacy protections, Congress has requested information from dozens of developers about their data collection and usage practices.

On Thursday, the Energy and Commerce Committee sent letters to 34 social app developers, among them Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare, Path, Tapbots, and even Apple, which develops the Find My Friends location app for iOS. Their purpose: To put to them the same questions the Committee has been grilling Apple on. One top concern is how developers treat personally identifiable information.

“At any time, has your iOS app transmitted or have you stored any other information from or about a user’s device — including, but not limited to, the user’s phone number, email account information, calendar, photo gallery, WiFi connection log, the Unique Device Identifier (UDID), a Media Access Control (MAC) address, or any other identifier unique to a specific device?” one question reads.

The distribution of these letters comes less than a week after the Committee asked Apple to send a representative to Washington to explain to it in person how the company is protecting the personal information of iPhone and iPad users.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work