Personally Identifiable Information (“PII”) has never been more valuable. In today’s networked world, seemingly trivial facts can be collected, molded into a marketable economic profile, and transferred in the blink of an eye. To be sure, the commodification of PII allows for provision of dramatically more efficient and effective services. Yet the potential for privacy abuses is substantial. What interest does one have in the constellation of facts that defines one’s identity? Is it something one can own, like their right of publicity? Or are others free to use what they learn about a person? This article surveys current privacy law and policy across jurisdictions with a view to providing both positive and normative answers to these increasingly important questions.
Thomas Hemnes, The Ownership and Exploitation of Personal Identity in the New Media Age, 12 J. Marshall Rev. Intell. Prop. L. 1 (2012)