Funds for this research were provided through the Annenberg Public Policy Center, University of Pennsylvania—Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Director.
Consumers’ Understanding of Privacy Rules in the Marketplace
Article first published online: 28 AUG 2008
Copyright 2008 by The American Council on Consumer Interests
Journal of Consumer Affairs
Volume 42, Issue 3, pages 411–424, Fall 2008
How to Cite
TUROW, J., HENNESSY, M. and BLEAKLEY, A. (2008), Consumers’ Understanding of Privacy Rules in the Marketplace. Journal of Consumer Affairs, 42: 411–424. doi: 10.1111/j.1745-6606.2008.00116.x
- Issue published online: 28 AUG 2008
- Article first published online: 28 AUG 2008
Studies suggest the general structure of Web sites leads consumers away from demanding that online merchants take certain approaches to privacy as a condition for dealing with them. This article presents findings from a nationally representative survey showing that the absence of such a privacy marketplace can also be attributed to the public’s incomplete knowledge of privacy regulations. Most respondents correctly understood that regulations regarding merchants’ sharing information are domain specific. The respondents were only sporadically correct, however, regarding which domains have which rules. The study raises questions about the best approaches to education in the absence of a coherent national policy of privacy regulation.