We have seen nothing of that, contrary, tech companies have improved our life's immensely, for free, and in my opinion, are the one of the biggest driving force towards improving the future. Data is not just being collected for advertisement, tracking, and evil purposes, but is a very important asset in the development of products.
Furthermore, historically it was governments, not companies, that were abusing private data for nefarious purposes. Yet there seems to be no effort to stop it happening from that direction? Well of course not, its way to useful, and you'd be a fool not to use it, but companies are 'bad' trying utilize it...
Have you been asleep for the past decade? Pervasive tracking and spying on consumers has been the topic of discussion even long before that.
EU countries have had data protection laws since late 90s, and the web companies have taken a collective dump on them. So now the EU has created a single law that is quite sensible (if not without flaws) which says: you can only collect the data you absolutely require to work. If you collect other data and especially if you send to third parties, you must ask the person using your site if that's ok.
Oh my, did web company do to deserve this? Oh, I don't know. Open TechCrunch and opt out of ~300 tracking, data collection and ad companies, and tell me what they have done.
i'm asking because my government knows everything about me: my private and public IPs, what sites I visit, my comments on those sites, how old I am, how often I go downtown etc etc etc
techcrunch just wants to sell you stuff.
there’s really no comparison.
And no, it’s not TechCrunch who’s getting all that data.
It should be straightforward to show quantifiable harm to people’s right to privacy. You could survey a large number of people to ask if they would be OK with having their online habits monitored in detail by unknown companies (whose websites they didn’t even visit) for the purpose of targeting ads to them at later dates. If close to 100% of respondents say this is an invasion of their privacy, then that’s what it is. You could also do some more technical research to work out how many times per week people’s privacy is invaded in this way. You’d probably arrive at a very big number, rising every year.