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to those pesky spammers". WRONG. For all you know, that policy could guarantee that your information will definitely be sold, because nobody (well, at least almost nobody) bothers to read those things.
So, what I propose is some kind of program, possibly a browser plugin, which can analyze these policies, looking at syntax and keywords which hint that the policy contains something that you probably wouldn't agree to, if you knew it was there. Then, it could report it's findings back to you, with excerpts from where it found dubious or iffy wording, and let you decide. Or for the especially lazy, there could be an option to let the program use its "better judgment" and simply give you a thumbs-up or thumbs-down (a bun or a bone, if you will).
Alternatively, I picture a website, that maintains a database of sites that have privacy policies. People that are good at understanding the policies and/or are paid by the site can write up reviews, and give rankings to the policies of different sites, in addition to a computerized analysis, as described above.
I think that this is a pretty plausible idea, and I hope that it will at some point be baked.
the w3c standard. [neilp, Nov 02 2004]
AT&T Privacy Bird
Your second paragraph, baked for Internet Explorer. [krelnik, Nov 02 2004]
Close to what you describe in your third paragraph. [krelnik, Nov 02 2004]
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P.S. analyzation = analysis.
||Yes, neilp nailed it with his link--this is baked. If you use Internet Explorer, download Privacy Bird, it is almost exactly what you describe in your second paragraph.
||Well, those links are are all good and useful, however, they do not solve the problem, if you think about it.
||Also, TRUSTe is optional as well. Although there is no reason why a site wouldn't use TRUSTe if it had a good policy, they easily could just not have it.
||If you have a dubious policy, why post one at all?
||Would probably work because legalese is very controlled english. What about a system that highlights important or suspicious phrases for you to review?
||Oh no, I accidentally deleted the last annotation...if that was yours, I am sorry, and feel free to re-annotate.