Christopher Slobogin

87 Texas L. Rev. See Also 25

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In his comment to Intellectual Privacy by Neil Richards, Professor Slobogin praises Richards for his scholarship, but identifies two pragmatic problems with Richards’s argument.

The first is a problem of classification.  Slobogin argues that what Richards terms “intellectual records,” which includes lists of books one owns and websites one visits, often reveal little more about us than conclusions that can be drawn from data about our purchases.  He finds the distinction Richards draws to be incomplete.  It is not clear to Slobogin why data about purchases do not merit extra protection when, by piecing together large numbers of otherwise innocuous data on purchases, one may reach the same conclusions as if one had access to intellectual records.  Slobogin also questions the role of the First Amendment in privacy protection when Fourth Amendment doctrine and scholarship address, if not solve, many of the problems Richards identifies.