Helen Nissenbaum (2004) Privacy as Contextual Integrity, WASHINGTON LAW REVIEW, 2004
This Article, which extends earlier work on the problem of privacy in public, explains why some of the prominent theoretical approaches to privacy, which were developed over time to meet traditional privacy challenges, yield unsatisfactory conclusions. It posits a new construct, “contextual integrity,” as an alternative benchmark for privacy, to capture the nature of challenges posed by information technologies. Contextual integrity ties adequate protection for privacy to norms of specific contexts, demanding that information gathering and dissemination be appropriate to that context and obey the governing norms of distribution within it. Building on the idea of “spheres of justice,” developed by political philosopher Michael Walzer, this Article argues that public surveillance violates a right to privacy because it violates contextual integrity; as such, it constitutes injustice and even tyranny.
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