Who Owns the Data?

saleThe OSPI-The Seattle Times data deal agreement brings up a lot of questions and comments.  The questions and comments do not just apply to this agreement but to other documents, agreements, and policies.  I am going to ramble on, hopefully with some coherency, posing some of those questions and making comments.  I will likely have more questions than comments and certainly don’t have answers for the questions.  …this may continue in future posts.

Who owns the data?  The agreement says:  “Confidential information provided by OSPI will remain the property of OSPI.”  Very clearly OSPI has staked claim to ownership of this “property”.  Be mindful the property consists of confidential information about our children and our families. As a property owner can they do what they want with their property within the boundaries of the law?  Can they sell, trade, or give away the data, oh, I mean the property?  Once the data is provided to another entity control over the property is lost.

How did OSPI gain possession and obtain ownership of confidential information about my child and my family?  How did they do that without my permission? Should they not have been required to get written permission at least?  I know I didn’t sell this information to the state.  I don’t recall ever signing any statement or agreement that transferred ownership of this personal data to the state.  I did provide information to my child’s school but I never gave permission for that information to be shared beyond the immediate school my child attends.  I certainly thought at the time, and still do, that the information I provided would be treated as confidential.  The school never informed me they would be sharing, or giving, or authorizing the state to take possession and ownership of our confidential information.  How confidential is the information once it is provided to another entity?  If they did inform me and other parents, their method of informing parents is as effective as the notices posted in Beware of the Leopard.

How can I regain control over my child’s data?  How can I check to see what data the state has on my child?  I wonder if the leopard knows?  What if the information is incorrect?  Is there a procedure in place to correct it?  Is there a procedure in place for me to have my child’s information removed from the state’s data sets? If not, I think the state should pay me for the use of my child’s information.  They need to pay well as privacy is valuable and confidential information, well, it should remain confidential and not shared, sold, traded, or provided by any means to any entity other than the one I provided it to.

Some might say the 4th Amendment should come into play here.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

I would add ten to that because I think the 14th Amendment is more applicable:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Did the state deprive me of my property without due process of the law?

Since OSPI claims the confidential information about my child and my family is their property, I have some questions of great importance.  I continue to use that confidential information as if it is my property.  If this information is truly the property of OSPI, will I be file6281262400709arrested for continuing to use this information?  Do I really need to be worried about being arrested for using my name or birth date?  I do give that information out from time to time but I never realized I was giving away property that did not belong to me and that I may no longer have any right to use.  Can I get permission to continue to use this information that belongs to the state?  Will I have to pay for the use of it?  Can I rent it?  Lease it?  Can I buy it back and retake ownership of it once again?  Should I even need to do that?  Did the state steal my property from me?  Who do I need to see about all of this?  Will the leopard know?

Absolutely absurd!  Right.  What is absurd is that we live in a country where the state collects data on its citizens and claims ownership of that data without consent of the citizens.

We shouldn’t worry about any of this, we should just order a pizza and enjoy.

Instead of saying people tried to warn us about this, we should just slap our flippers and say “So Long and Thanks for All the Fish”.

Related articles and posts

Beware of Data Sharing Cheerleaders Offering Webinars

Parents Need to Know About Student Data Privacy

No Need for Matching with this Data Deal

FERPA does not protect student privacy, and never did

Privacy and Cloud Computing in Public Schools

HB 2133 Maintaining Privacy of Student Education Records

State Data Deal with Media Should Alarm You


This entry was posted in Data Mining / Privacy, Protection of Pupil Rights, State Longitudinal Data Systems. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Who Owns the Data?

  1. Pingback: CA Releases Student Information | Stop Common Core in Washington State

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s