1. Users could read the policy once and determine their own standards for what terms they will accept. Currently, policies are not read at all (by most users) because they are each unique, lengthy, and in complex legalese terms. A standard policy could be appended with simple language explanations of the various terms and conditions. This would facilitate understanding and – once the model is in widespread use – make it worthwhile for users to review it.
2. Thereafter they will only need to verify that other sites employing the model policy conform to the user's standards.
3. Standardization could lend itself to iconic representation of terms which would further simplify end-user review.
4. Standardization would facilitate competition among offerors. If one site/vendor uses the model and conforms to the user's preferences, it may be preferred over another site/vendor that has a custom policy. If two sites/vendors use the model policy and offers similar services as another, the user may use the differences in the selection of standard terms to choose the site/vendor.
5. By establishing a basis for competition among sites/vendors by the stringency of the privacy terms that they offer, overall privacy can be expected to increase.
Consent and Anti-Patterns
Proposal is that P3 collect examples of consent anti-patterns... i.e. if we see real instances of poor practice in the collection of user data, or presumed consent, or making service provision conditional on acceptance of privacy-hostile terms, etc to record these instances (not with the intent of alienating the service provider concerned).
In the first instance, we will need to collect some examples of policies which are not necessarily "poor", but which serve as discussion points for the topic.
Hopefully out of the process of collection and categorization would come a list of common mistakes. P3 could then propose alternatives.
Privacy Risk Assessment
P3wg can make a valuable contribution to privacy by crafting a Privacy Risk Assessment. To date, this type of assessment has not been done even though it is a fundamental to any privacy risk analysis. Current discussions of risk rely on citing of examples of breaches, but have not evaluated which data items subject a person to the most risk.