Privacy, Interests, and Inalienable Rights

Moral Philosophy and Politics 5 (2):327-355 (2018)
Authors
Adam Moore
University of Washington
Abstract
Some rights are so important for human autonomy and well-being that many scholars insist they should not be waived, traded, or abandoned. Privacy is a recent addition to this list. At the other end of the spectrum is the belief that privacy is a mere unimportant interest or preference. This paper defends a middle path between viewing privacy as an inalienable, non-waivable, non-transferrable right and the view of privacy as a mere subjective interest. First, an account of privacy is offered that clarifies the concept and demonstrates how privacy is directly related to human health and well-being. Second, along with considering and rejecting several accounts for why privacy might be considered an inalienable right, an argument is offered for why it is morally permissible to waive, transfer, abandon, or alienate privacy.
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DOI 10.1515/mopp-2018-0016
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