back to article You can 'go your own way' over GDPR, says UK's new Information Commissioner

The incoming head of the UK's data watchdog has "gone on the record" to say he will be fair and impartial in his dealings with tech companies despite once describing Facebook as "morally bankrupt pathological liars." John Edwards, who is currently New Zealand's Privacy Commissioner, was responding to a now-deleted tweet he …

  1. devin3782

    "I want to make data protection easy – easy for industry to implement at low cost, easy for consumers to exercise privacy-friendly choices in their marketplace"

    So that's basically a regression then, and companies will go back to their old we don't care approach, consumers can't exercise a privacy-friendly choice when no one is willing to maintain consumers privacy. Followed by a la la la we can't be bothered to confront big tech firms because we let them get to big

    1. Pseudononymous Coward
      Meh

      It's like the contestant in a beauty queen contest declaring that the thing she most wants is World Peace.

      Everyone wants that, Darling, but the hard part is how are you going to achieve it, and what compromises are you going to make?

      1. sabroni Silver badge
        WTF?

        re: It's like the contestant in a beauty queen contest declaring

        It's more like the person running the military declaring the thing they want most is world peace.

        This guy is going to run the ICO sweetie, they've not put him in charge of looking cute.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      The UK is forging ahead post Brexit! Stop with the doom 'n' gloom!

      Look! We're ALL winning now! (Daily Express)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        <sarcasm level="maximum">WOW the crown stamp on a pint glass</sarcasm>, I didn't even know it had been removed that's how little I cared. Here are some stupid things to waste time and "seen to be" making progress.

        1. Pseudononymous Coward
          Facepalm

          How can replacing one mandatory symbol with another one possibly be 'part of a bigger package of changes designed to slash EU-era red tape to “improve competition, remove barriers to innovation and help both consumers and businesses”'.

          It means retooling costs for the glass manufacturers and lots of glasses having to be thrown away for the customers.

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            A lot of would be exporters into the EU are now discovering the hard way how red tape works. Previously they weren't really exporting, just selling into a part of their home market that happened to have a bit of water in the way. Now they're really trying to export and it's more complicated than they thought, especially when it's some sort of agricultural product.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Sadly the market for small shipment artisanal British produce is now dead. Small batch Scotch, Gin, Cheese etc is no longer stocked alongside the more mainstream alternatives in EU supermarkets. Ah well. Can't make an omelette without throwing some eggs under a bus.

            2. ICL1900-G3 Bronze badge

              Downvoters

              Downvote away all you like, it happens to be true.

        2. Charlie Clark Silver badge
          Pint

          I'd also be surpised if the directive stipulated CE only, or even if the crown wasn't allowed as an equivalent, just means that the glasses couldn't be sold elsewhere in the EU. Lots of products have CE + loads of other symbols. Still, pointless trying to discuss this with the red top crowd. Please ignore me, while I mumble into my pint glass.

          1. low_resolution_foxxes Silver badge

            If you haven't come across this bollocks yet, the CE mark is due to be withdrawn from use in Britain.

            I spent two weeks reviewing hundreds of product labels at work to check compliance with the new "UKCA" mark (Brexit CE replacement fun). So now we have to have new UKCA/CE labels

          2. Mr Dogshit
            Pint

            Your 568ml glass, you mean.

      2. Dan 55 Silver badge
        Facepalm

        New proposals will repeal “onerous” rules and allow hospitality venues to voluntarily place the crown on pint glasses.

        Strange of the article to omit that pint glasses are mostly made in France anyway. I guess the French supplier will add the crown, if the venue pays more for a distinctive design on the pint glass that nobody else has.

        This will be part of a bigger package of changes designed to slash EU-era red tape to “improve competition, remove barriers to innovation and help both consumers and businesses”.

        Yeah. Only the pint glasses are made in an EU country anyway...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Ah. Ze Brexit: Beaucoups des bonus pour La France.

          Merci mes choux-fleurs!!! J'espère ze jambons anglais will not be too un'appy...

          1. RegGuy1 Silver badge

            Who is the brexiter who keeps downvoting these comments?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Same as UK passports - they're made in France too......

      3. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

        "Brexit triumph as crown stamp FINALLY returns to pint glasses after 15 years"

        Lol! Yeah, it's a triumph... Dear God...

      4. Jamie Jones Silver badge

        My God, it's like an article out of The Onion.

        In a "debate" online with a brexitter recently, he kept spouting bollocks that he'd obviously read in the tabloids by the buzzwords he used (I mean, not debatable stuff, just out and out lies) - I posted links to trusted sources debunking his claims, he of course couldn't produce anything to back them up.

        I then kept asking him what advantages brexit has given us. The only answer hr could give is that he no longer has to expkain himself to "remoaners(sic)"

        Then his "mate" (who wrote in the same style, and was probably a sockpuppet) told him not to bother, as I was a brainwashed sheep who couldn't be helped. Funny, from the people that regurgitate talking points with no proof to back them up.

  2. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

    'how [can] the UK ... make progress without "aping" what happens on the Continent'

    And therein lies the problem: we can't. We will always have to deal with the EU, and therefore we will always have to conform to their regulations. The main difference now, of course, is that we no longer have any say in those regulations. Yay Brexit.

    (Cue up/downvoting in proportion to the political stance of the readership.)

    1. codejunky Silver badge

      @Hubert Cumberdale

      "We will always have to deal with the EU, and therefore we will always have to conform to their regulations."

      Interesting problem. And yet we deal with the rest of the world too, and in our dealing with them comply with their regs but they dont dictate domestic policy. While members of the EU have domestic policy dictated to them even if it upsets their countries constitutions!

      "Yay Brexit."

      Damn right

      1. Tomato42

        Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

        Read https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_effect, learn something.

        1. devin3782
          Thumb Up

          Thank you

          Today I learned something thank you kindly, I didn't know that pattern I was observing had a name

        2. codejunky Silver badge

          Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

          @Tomato42

          The actual existence of this effect in the real world is disputed. While there is large discussion on the possible race to the bottom among countries competing for attention of internationally mobile capital, there seems to be some limited evidence that at least in some sectors the California effect can be observed.

          From your source. While there is a world of evidence for the opposite. Also a country would be schizophrenic to adopt all the regulations in the world domestically.

          1. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

            Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

            I don't normally reply to your rants, as experience tells me it's pointless. However, in this case I feel the need to call out your mixing-up of schizophrenia and dissociative identity disorder (aka multiple personality disorder). This is an all-too-common conflation that is supremely unhelpful for those living with either condition.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Trollface

              Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

              Hubert Cumberdale>> I feel the need to call out your mixing-up of schizophrenia and dissociative identity disorder

              Hmmm. Could it be narcissistic personality disorder ?

            2. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

              @Hubert Cumberdale

              "I don't normally reply to your rants, as experience tells me it's pointless"

              I have noticed. Thank you for pointing out the difference in psychiatric conditions (showing you know what was ment) but you are right in how pointless your reply is as it doesnt actually say anything in response to the discussion.

          2. Dan 55 Silver badge

            Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

            Also a country would be schizophrenic to adopt all the regulations in the world domestically.

            It would. But then, before the UK had a vote at the table where EU regulations are set, which are in force in the single market and also carry weight in a lot of the world (Brussels effect, similar to the California effect) so it wouldn't need to be schizophrenic.

            Now it's just going to have to import any old shitty Australian beef. And drop climate objectives in trade agreements. Because rattling our tin for trade agreements is the new post-Brexit Great British way.

            1. RegGuy1 Silver badge

              Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

              But hey -- SVRNTY

              Who needs education?

            2. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

              @Dan 55

              "(Brussels effect, similar to the California effect)"

              Read my comment that you hit reply to. It literally addresses this point brought up by Tomato42. An effect who's existence is disputed.

              "so it wouldn't need to be schizophrenic."

              For a country to domestically follow the laws of all trade partners it would.

              "Now it's just going to have to import any old shitty Australian beef."

              What is wrong with it?

              "And drop climate objectives in trade agreements."

              We can dream. Unfortunately this gov still seems to want to be somewhat 'green'. This green energy being so good that prices have gone up, supply down and coal plants had to be fired up (ones that were suspended) just to cover shortfall.

              I see your complaining I just dont see at what.

              1. Dan 55 Silver badge

                Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                An effect who's existence is disputed.

                By people who failed GCSE Geography.

                For a country to domestically follow the laws of all trade partners it would.

                If the UK allows food produced according to another country's standards to be imported, it's permitting those standards. This is unlike the EU's approach which is only to allow food produced to single market standards to be imported.

                What is wrong with it?

                British, Australian food standard differences causing angst in free trade deal

                We can dream.

                They walk among us.

                I see your complaining I just dont see at what.

                None so blind as those who don't want to see.

                1. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                  @Dan 55

                  "By people who failed GCSE Geography."

                  An economic effect disputed by people who failed GCSE Geography? Maybe they were studying economics instead?

                  "If the UK allows food produced according to another country's standards to be imported, it's permitting those standards."

                  I think you are reading that the wrong way around (the statement is correct I just think your understanding might be wrong?) that the exporter must meet the importers standards for the product/service being exported. That is the norm for all trade.

                  "This is unlike the EU's approach which is only to allow food produced to their standards."

                  That is not correct. Its not just the EU approach, thats the norm for all trade. Only importing what is acceptable by the importers standards.

                  "British, Australian food standard differences causing angst in free trade deal"

                  And it would. The EU banned stuff which got carried over into UK law which needs scrapping. Even more-so there are things people here dont want doing here even if they still want the outcome. A none EU example would be our love of plastic only to send it to China to dispose of. But of course if people dont want it they wont buy it.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                    "And it would. The EU banned stuff which got carried over into UK law which needs scrapping. Even more-so there are things people here dont want doing here even if they still want the outcome. A none EU example would be our love of plastic only to send it to China to dispose of. But of course if people dont want it they wont buy it."

                    Is the above AI generated? It's not a very convincing piece of English prose.

                    1. codejunky Silver badge

                      Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                      @AC

                      "Is the above AI generated? It's not a very convincing piece of English prose.

                      I now understand why you remain AC since your reading skills are abysmal. Why you insist on following me around is still a question. Are you my pet troll but now posting coward instead of by name?

                  2. Dan 55 Silver badge

                    Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                    That is not correct. Its not just the EU approach, thats the norm for all trade. Only importing what is acceptable by the importers standards.

                    You don't appear up to date with the British government's latest pronouncements on the matter. Liz Truss is on record to a Politico Europe trade journalist yesterday as saying that the UK will accept anything when imported but only UK businesses will have to follow UK standards.

                    So the UK will become very schizophrenic indeed:

                    - Home market - UK businesses must meet UK standards.

                    - Exports - UK businesses must meet destination country standards.

                    - Imports - shops will accept any old tat and put UK businesses at a disadvantage.

                    So because the UK will be accepting anything from abroad, UKCA will just turn into an albatross around British businesses' neck instead of a guarantor of minimum national standards.

                    1. codejunky Silver badge

                      Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                      @Dan 55

                      "Liz Truss is on record to a Politico Europe trade journalist yesterday"

                      Thats a twitter feed which doesnt seem to link to a source.

                      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

                        Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                        In the infinitesimal chance that you're not being deliberately obtuse, the source is Liz Truss at the Policy Exchange and the Politico journalist was present at the speech and this is reflected in the journalists own Twitter feed. You may find a report on the Politico Europe website.

                        So, the UK has to follow EU standards for UK businesses to export to its neighbours but there is a policy of accepting lower standard goods from RoW into its home market undermining the UK standards that UK businesses have to follow. Brexit makes very little sense to me.

                        As this debate seems done and dusted we'll stop here. I'm sure you'd love to carry on but there's no point, the facts speak for themselves.

                        1. codejunky Silver badge

                          Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                          @Dan 55

                          "In the infinitesimal chance that you're not being deliberately obtuse, the source is Liz Truss at the Policy Exchange and the Politico journalist was present at the speech and this is reflected in the journalists own Twitter feed."

                          Not trying to be obtuse but if I took gossip of what someone said as truth then Thatcher said there is no such thing as society. There isnt even a quote to take out of context on that twitter feed, only an opinion of something he heard and cast judgement on. Maybe he is right but there is no original source for me to form an opinion on, only hearsay.

                          1. Anonymous Coward
                            Anonymous Coward

                            Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                            She did.

                            1. codejunky Silver badge

                              Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                              @AC

                              "She did."

                              Which is often wildly taken out of context and given an entirely different meaning when talking about her.

                          2. Anonymous Coward
                            Anonymous Coward

                            Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                            codejunky on another thread>>> “This is ironic in the extreme. Barnier preaching the merits of national sovereignty to curb the over-powerful EU and European Court of Human Rights,” tweeted Simon Clarke, the Tory MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland.

                            codejunky on this thread>>> There isnt even a quote to take out of context on that twitter feed, only an opinion of something he heard and cast judgement on.

                            1. codejunky Silver badge

                              Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                              @AC

                              I notice pet troll is back. It is established that Barnier is running on a platform of arguing for a return of French sovereignty. So far its hearsay Truss might have said something but without any quote nor context around it.

                              Dr.N its too late to hide behind AC, your already known to be my unwanted pet troll.

                              1. Anonymous Coward
                                Anonymous Coward

                                Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                                No, it's you're already known to be my unwanted pet troll, surely?

                              2. Anonymous Coward
                                Anonymous Coward

                                Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                                Of course, that rases the question, whose your wanted pet troll? I guess that must be me then.

                                1. Anonymous Coward
                                  Anonymous Coward

                                  Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

                                  No! I'm Spartacus Troll!!!

            3. Strahd Ivarius Silver badge
              Happy

              Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

              And UK already imported its Information Commissioner

          3. MJI Silver badge

            Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

            See the linked Brussels effect as well

            1. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

              @MJI

              "See the linked Brussels effect as well"

              Yup.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

        "...have domestic policy dictated to them even if it upsets their countries constitutions!" A bit like Scotland then?

        1. codejunky Silver badge

          Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

          @AC

          "A bit like Scotland then?"

          No

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @Hubert Cumberdale

            Hmmmmmm. Are you sure about that?

    2. Ken G
      Trollface

      proviso

      You will always have to conform to <EU> regulations... if you want to do business with EU countries. If you say "fuck business" you will have more freedom to diverge and achieve perfect sovereignty.

      There's no reason the UK can't adopt 3 phase 330V 35Hz as the domestic power standard or insist on beer being served in quart marked mugs so long as cost is ignored.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: proviso

        >UK can't adopt 3 phase 330V 35Hz

        Volts and Hertz sound like damn foreigners

        From now on the British unit of electrical potential and current are the Victoria(V) and Albert(A)

        Henrys and Farads can stay but Hertz will be replaced by the Boris, which is defined as the number of complete change of previous direction per second.

        1. ItWasn'tMe
          Pint

          Re: proviso

          V good, have one on me, with or without a symbol on it...

        2. RobLang

          Re: proviso

          Good point! Let's deal only with Watts. Good ole Watt. We don't care what the voltage or amperage is, just give us the power!

        3. Barrie Shepherd

          Re: proviso

          We should go back to cycles per second - far more descriptive.

          KayCees is a far better way to describe a radio stations shortwave operating frequency :-)

        4. WolfFan Silver badge

          Re: proviso

          Albert was a foreigner. Vickie was mostly of foreign blood, too.

          Germans out! Britain for Britons!

        5. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge
          Pint

          Re: number of complete change of previous direction per second

          Brilliant! Just brilliant! Have many of these ----->

    3. Flak
      FAIL

      Double trouble

      As EU and UK regulations diverge, businesses dealing with the EU and the UK will have the pleasure of having to comply with two sets of regulations rather than just one.

      Sounds like great fun until the inevitable happens and the regulatory requirements contradict each other...

      1. Potemkine! Silver badge

        Re: Double trouble

        businesses dealing with the EU and the UK will have the pleasure of having to comply with two sets of regulations rather than just one.

        Sometimes size does matter. If it's too expensive for an EU business to deal with UK when selling elsewhere, it may well stop to serve that market. The resulting cost may be highly different for an UK business having customers all across the EU.

      2. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Double trouble

        UKCA's had the can kicked down the road a year and I bet it won't be the last time.

        Eventually when it's finally running UKCA will just be a cut-price rubber-stamp of already-existing CE standards because it's impossible to argue against trade gravity. Source: GCSE Geography three and a bit (mumble) decades ago.

        1. Fazal Majid

          Re: Double trouble

          Apparently British firms used to do 60% of the EU business in CE certifications, and have now been frozen out of that market.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Double trouble

            >British firms used to do 60% of the EU business in CE certifications,

            And I suspect a bunch of them went bust before 2020, so be careful of any stats showing that Brexit had no effect.

            Our (Canadian Medical Device maker) Eu notified body was a UK firm - because they spoke English.

            In 2016 they were unable to tell us what the effects of Brexit would be, what the rules would be after 2020, if they would have-to/be-able-to move to the Eu etc etc

            So naturally we dropped them and switched to a firm in Belgium. I suspect a lto of other customers in the UK and abroad did the same.

        2. RegGuy1 Silver badge

          Re: Double trouble

          SVRNTY

          1. MJI Silver badge

            Re: Double trouble

            Did you drop your Scrabble box or sneeze with a mouthfull of Alphabetti Spaghetti?

            1. Strahd Ivarius Silver badge

              Re: Double trouble

              the missing letters didn't comply with UK regulations and had to be removed.

    4. Def Silver badge

      I seem to recall "The Norway Model" being advanced as a possible compromise at some point in the past, but Norway has to implement all EU regulations with exactly zero input into what they are.

      It's also interesting to note that Norway has implemented more EU regulations than any actual EU member.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge
        1. Def Silver badge
          Thumb Up

          It's a nice theory at least. I doubt little old Norway with a population equal to 1.2% of the EU really has much sway in EU policies.

          At least not without substantially packed brown envelopes being passed under the table, of which we have a never ending supply. I am having trouble finding places to keep all the ones I have around here. ;)

        2. RegGuy1 Silver badge

          To be a member of EFTA requires freedom of movement of people.

          Apparently we are not allowed that as we want to stop foreigners from coming in. But now we have SVRNTY we can't.

          Remind me again who the stupid ones are -- leave or remain?

          1. Anonymous Coward
          2. hoola Silver badge

            This constant finger-pointing and assumption that anyone who voted leave is somehow stupid is equally unhelpful.

            The leave vote generated a passionate response from people who disliked a whole plethora of things about the EU. Some of those were matched by strategic soundbites form the leave campaign but equally Remain did little to help the cause. There was an arrogance from those in Parliament who supported remain that they simply could not believe anyone would vote any other way. A remain win was assured. Businesses then waded in and wrote letters telling employees to vote remain with all sorts of dire scenarios as to what would happen. This was a crass move and will more than likely pushed some who either were not going to vote or may have voted remain to vote leave as the default reaction of some of the British proletariat is to do the opposite of what is being asked.

            It was a simple two way vote so it was highly likely that there was going to be a winner & and loser. In the end this was very close, but the parameters that were set were a simple majority.

            It is my belief that because remain was for status quo, there are people who would have voted but just could not be bothered. They equally did not believe a leave win was possible and by it's very nature, status quo tends to have a less passionate following than change.

            We then had 3 years of ineffective Government as all they did was bicker and achieve nothing. This has made the situation significantly worse and although it is easy to blame those who voted leave, the actual problem is with those in Government (and parliament in general) who created the environment that allowed BJs 2019 "Get Brexit Done" campaign to be successful.

            So are leaver voters stupid? no more so than any other voter.

            Are remain voters stupid? again no more than any other voter.

            Has Government been (and continues to be) stupid? Very much so and are largely to blame for the situation we find ourselves in.

      2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        >It's also interesting to note that Norway has implemented more EU regulations than any actual EU member.

        Meeting of the Norwegian eu standards committee:

        Next item on the agenda.

        Do we adopt the Eu standard on the font size for Olive Oil bottle labelling or do we create a committee to create our own standard because of Sovereignty ?

        Are the pubs open ?

        Standard adopted, rubber stamps hit paper - meeting adjourned to pub.

    5. Ray Foulkes

      The logical extension therefore is..

      Since we are outside the EU and outside the USA and outside etc. etc. According to this logic we "have to follow all the regulations of every trading block with whom we trade" - so it depends on what you mean by "regulations". To export anywhere we have to have "regulatory compliance" with them i.e. meet their standards for what is shipped, ditto in the other direction. What we do NOT have to follow are all regulations about the way in which those products are made. Exporting to the EU is now the same as exporting everwhere else. Well, it would be if the EU were behaving a bit less like arseholes. Tough, but there it is.

    6. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

      (I have to say, that's a better proportion than I expected. If only the readership were able to do something about this madness.)

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Phoning it in

    So, UK's had laws and the detailed bashed out in case law by the British courts and judiciary, with the case law being there open and clear and argued over.

    Then it went the regulator route, the laws were vague and the details handed over to individual regulator decisions. Now the details are in th regulators head, but at least the regulator is British operating under British jurisdiction. The choices they make, them and their families have to live with.

    To this, a New Zealand regulator, who is literally phoning it in from New Zealand, another jurisdiction.

    "I look forward to the challenge of steering the organisation and the British economy into a position of international leadership in the safe and trusted use of data for the benefit of all."

    So no privacy then.... *your* "data used for the benefit of all". I'm guessing a British privacy commission would be problematic, because he'd look up his own file and see the vaste swath of surveillance data accumulated on him, and might object. He'd also have to live with the consequences, not so a NZ'er, who can return at any time back home.

    I'm betting, he will tell MPs that he plans to move to the UK for the role, and then will change his plans and stay in the NZ jurisdiction while making his decisions. Just a guess....

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    From a simplistic point of view, all we need is to force sites to put a 'decline all' button on cookie popups (in the same colour as the accept). Instead of hiding it 10 pages down in 'your choices' or even 'customise', like The Register, because let's be honest is there a single person in the world who thinks, "you know what I really want Tailored Advertising but would rather not send Analytics"

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      FFS just keep deleting them. Monthly, or weekly, or daily. You send telemetry but it just arrives in pieces. That will mess with their algorithms.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fairy Story......

    Once upon a time, in a land far away, Princess Equifax woke up from a long sleep. In the dream which woke her up, a huge ugly monster called Exfiltrate was calling her names, and daring her to chase them away.

    Unfortunately, it was too late.......Exfiltrate had already spent months, while she was sleeping.....months and months and months.......stealing the family jewels. She never found out where Exfiltrate lived, and she never got the jewels back either.

    This fairy tale is in two parts: the story about Princess Equifax.......and the other fairy tale called GDPR. It's simply not clear to anyone how John Edwards (or indeed anyone else) can "protect" data in the face of widespread illegal (and undisclosed) data theft.

    ......and that's before we get to that other Grimm's Fairy Tale.....where the UK government is in bed with Peter Thiel and Palantir.

    Sweet dreams.......I don't think!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    "morally bankrupt pathological liars"

    Well, for Facebook, I think that that is a perfectly apt description.

    1. My-Handle Silver badge

      Re: "morally bankrupt pathological liars"

      I was about to say the same thing. If it's substantiable, is it unfair or biased?

      Facebook have made a great deal of public promises that they have subsequently broken, the one about not integrating Whatsapp's systems into Facebooks springs immediately to mind. That in itself is enough to prove "pathological liars", and I think the repeated "we'll do better" statements go a fair way to proving "morally bankrupt".

    2. alain williams Silver badge

      Re: "morally bankrupt pathological liars"

      The trouble is that no one seems to care, it is not just facebook. But then look at the examples of heads of government (I'm not just talking about Boris).

      The liars are the employees of these corporations - who then pretend that it is nothing to do with them but the corporation that has lied. All corporate utterances should be publicly signed off by a named individual so that we know who to hold to account when we find out that we were being lied to.

      Consider the outcry if schools were to teach pupils that "it is OK to lie to gain advantage" or the churches to say that the ninth commandment has been abolished.

    3. LDS Silver badge

      Re: "morally bankrupt pathological liars"

      No, it looks to me he's too Facebook-friendly. Facebook is far worse than a morally bankrupt pathological liar.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "morally bankrupt pathological liars"

      Is that why Boris's Government appointed him?

    5. martinusher Silver badge

      Re: "morally bankrupt pathological liars"

      I seem to have a vague memory (and a transcript) of a select committee hearing about the fallout from Cambridge Analytica that was held a few years ago in which Facebook was asked about the how/what/why of its business model.

      Based on what was said there "morally corrupt pathological liars" seems about right. Obviously as a result of these hearings its quite possible that Facebook reformed its business operations and generally cleaned up its act.

      1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

        Re: "morally bankrupt pathological liars"

        Obviously as a result of these hearings its quite possible that Facebook reformed its business operations and generally cleaned up its act.

        I'll agree on possible, but how probable is it?

  7. pip25
    Stop

    "Make privacy easy"

    Privacy, like so many other topics involving conflicting interests, is not easy. Claiming the opposite unfortunately speaks volumes of the Information Commissioner's competence, honesty, or both.

  8. A Non e-mouse Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Privacy

    Edwards had this to say: "What I really want to do is make privacy easy.

    You have no privacy in the 21st century.

    Sorted.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No appetite

    Still have the phrase "regulatory appetite" ringing in my ears from my chat with that ICO Case Officer last month.

    I had assumed the "lack of" part was silent, as in "lack of regulatory appetite" and this article tends to confirm that.

  10. Howard Sway

    the "United Kingdom is entitled to take Fleetwood Mac's advice and 'Go your Own Way'

    Nice one, that's a bitter, angry song about the breakdown of relationships, fuelled by the resentment caused, and most often cited as symbolic of the dysfunctional never ending soap opera that the band has been ever since.

    The song's not "advice", it's basically saying f*** off to an ex-partner.

    Is that how he's planning to behave?

    1. LDS Silver badge
      Facepalm

      There was a time when people took advices from philosphers and past leaders...

      .... now all they know is a pop/rock band song....

      "The song's not "advice", it's basically saying f*** off to an ex-partner."

      Well, that's the Brexit "sentiment", isn't it?

    2. Roger Greenwood

      Re: the "United Kingdom is entitled to take Fleetwood Mac's advice and 'Go your Own Way'

      I was hoping for many more comments regarding an Albatross, chains, or even tell me lies....

      1. ItWasn'tMe
        Gimp

        Re: the "United Kingdom is entitled to take Fleetwood Mac's advice and 'Go your Own Way'

        We'll just expect the usual sordid Tango in the Night with our politicians.

      2. Pantagoon

        Re: the "United Kingdom is entitled to take Fleetwood Mac's advice and 'Go your Own Way'

        That tweet is a bit of an Albatross around his neck. He says he's Never Going Back Again to his old ways, and is Mystified why it upset big tech.

        Oh Well, he's A Man of the World and has seen enough Monday Mornings to know that a few Little Lies can lead to a Landslide victory.

        No doubt he believes that he keeps the World Turning but I reckon he is Hypnotized by his own Dreams. Everywhere he goes, Storms follow, let's hope he breaks The Chain of incompetence that this government has brought forth.

  11. teebie

    "I want to make data protection easy – easy for industry to implement at low cost"

    It's easy for companies not to hoover up every piece of data they can find. Some of them don't seem to be keen on the idea.

    1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
      Alert

      He could employ Baroness Harding as a consultant to provide first hand knowledge of how industry could implement low-cost data protection

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        "He could employ Baroness Harding"

        Don't

        even

        think

        it.

  12. elsergiovolador Silver badge

    Understanding

    "Data protection" can mean different things for different people and such ambiguity is useful for propaganda purposes.

    For example, by "Data protection" they mean protecting the ability to extract the value from data or protecting the inconvenient data from surfacing (aka censorship), but you mean "Data protection" by your right to privacy. So if you support "Data protection" you don't necessarily support your own interest, quite the opposite.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    he will be fair and impartial in his dealings with tech companies

    I expect a wave of angry letters telling tech companies how much the ICO is angry with them.

  14. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

    "he will be fair and impartial in his dealings with tech companies despite once describing Facebook as "morally bankrupt pathological liars.""

    So? Why "despite"? It's a fair assessment.

  15. Pantagoon
    Coat

    Go Your Own Way

    That tweet is a bit of an Albatross around his neck. He says he's Never Going Back Again to his old ways, and is Mystified why it upset big tech.

    Oh Well, he's A Man of the World and has seen enough Monday Mornings to know that a few Little Lies can lead to a Landslide victory.

    No doubt he believes that he keeps the World Turning but I reckon he is Hypnotized by his own Dreams. Everywhere he goes, Storms follow, let's hope he breaks The Chain of incompetence that this government has brought forth.

  16. Barrie Shepherd

    Edwards had this to say: "What I really want to do is make privacy easy."

    Simple make it illegal to collect and store personal data other that justified for the purpose.

    Why does TV licensing in the UK want to know my name, age, email and sex?

    Technically they only need the address to issue a TV license the rest is unnecessary data mining from CRAPITA.

    1. JulieM

      That pretty much was the idea of GDPR before it got watered down.

      I think people need to start taking more pro-active measures to thwart corporate data harvesting. If the correct answer is "none of your business" but there is no option for that, then there is no obligation to be even remotely truthful. Maybe eventually, the data they are harvesting will be too poisoned to be of any use to anyone. Someone needs to create a browser extension for filling forms quickly with random data .....

  17. Cliffwilliams44 Bronze badge

    "What I really want to do is make privacy easy. And I think I can translate that to the UK. I want to make data protection easy – easy for industry to implement at low cost, easy for consumers to exercise privacy-friendly choices in their marketplace, and easy for people to access remedies when things go wrong."

    And this will never happen as long as personal data is a commodity up for sale. As those collecting the data for sale have far more motivation than those tasked with protecting it. The lure of large profits will motivate people to do things that may well be illegal.

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