Enlarge /. Surely anyone in the world could trust these guys with 100% of their personal information, right?
Email users who have subscribed to Westworld updates from Delos Destinations may have received a message today about the 2039 Privacy Act and its likely impact on Delos experiences.
"As you may have heard," Delos's email begins, "Congress has just passed the 2039 Privacy Act, which will come into force today. You will see how this legislation will soon take effect . " Weeks. "The writing continues:
All digital footprint companies must adhere to this new initiative, which affects the way their private information is collected, stored, shared and processed. As part of this new revision, lawmakers have teamed up with Incite to find a clearer path to radical data transparency and put control back in the hands of consumers.
In a cynical but perhaps really American step, the message assumes that the enforcement and management of data protection regulations is the responsibility of an equally fictitious private company, Incite Inc., of which we previously heard in a hidden trailer. The message also instructs users to visit InciteInc.com for more information.
The email that came in under the subject "How the new 2039 data protection law will affect you" will be familiar to anyone who has recently received a CCPA message or 12 in their personal inbox.
A friendly popup when you visit Incite Inc.
… plan my way there exactly?
One wonders how much of this data you could actually correctly reconstruct from someone else's browser profile.
The Incite website feels like a master class in data protection keywords. Incitement is intended to "donate our revolutionary algorithms to monitor and regulate the entire technology industry and set a global standard for consensual data collection and processing".
It continues: "Our mission is to ensure that you benefit from your own data, sort the mess, and show you what you like, what you want, and what you need."
What could possibly go wrong?
Given that the following "short video demonstration of your future with Incite" is the trailer for Season 3 of Westworld … probably quite a bit.
In season 2, Westworld was not shy to draw parallels to the current era of big data and all companies that deal with the gathering and trading of information that keeps us surrounded by digital doubles. Many reviewers called Facebook out for a comparison when viewers learned that the parks are a secondary company to Delos' core data mining and surveillance activities.
There are currently no fewer than three competing data protection proposals in Congress in 2020, each of which has its own strengths and weaknesses. The likelihood that one of them will become law in the near future is so bleak that you could be forgiven that 2039 is too ambitious. But maybe times will change.