Friday, May 21, 2010

Panoptic Presence?

Unbelievable! I've been saying this for AGES! Blood/tissue samples and waste should be destroyed after the initial decided use UNLESS the donor (or their guardian) has agreed to others uses.

The New Scientist article about baby blood prick samples in USA highlights growing fears of government and corporations coinciding in a desire to have characteristics about a population mapped. Be it the DNA database to identify criminals, tests to check the spread of HIV, or research into the mutations of cancer cells, there are plenty of worthy and community-minded reasons to want this information stored/available. Yet without asking permission the cloak-and-danger element of secretly harvesting personal information is frightening people out of potential genuine and voluntary participation in such schemes.

I am no privacy reactionary, but I think I have a right to determine whether my body parts and the information garnered from them is accessed and for what purposes this might be.

Conspiracy theorists think Big Brother is making a giant database to track us all - good luck, I say - we are too many and too mobile. But keeping my information without my knowledge, well that is scary.

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