There are important reasons for maintaining privacy in these matters. People in our community have lost jobs and even custody of their children when publicly outed.
I. Discretion in the Scene
II. BDSM and the Law
Visit my Law section.
III. Protecting Your Privacy
- Privacy Information from the Federal Trade Commission: Helpful information on protecting privacy including how to prohibit the misuse of credit reports for direct marketing and remove names from direct mailing and telemarketing lists.
- The major credit bureaus -- Experian and TransUnion -- will let you order your own credit report. TransUnion has instructions for getting off junk mail lists.
- Coping with Identity Theft from the Privacy Rights Clearning House.
IV. Privacy on the Internet
- Washington Post Special Report on Computer Privacy
- Cookie Central
- Direct Marketing Association includes instructions for removing your listing from mailing and telemarketing lists.
- Quadralay Cryptography Archive
"You have zero privacy. Get over it!"|
- Scott McNealy, CEO - Sun Microsystems Inc.
V. Privacy Tips
- Don't use your work email account to send personal email. If you have Web access but your employer pays for your email account think about getting a free Web based email account. Otherwise your employer has the legal right to read your email. (Deja News, Yahoo! Mail, and HoTMaiL are some ot the most popular free email services available through the web. For a longer list visit Yahoo's directory of Free Email Providers.) Bare in mind, however, it's still possible for your employer to review the sites you've been visiting on the WWW. You might want to check the company policy on Internet use.
- Bigfoot and NetForward are free services to forward your email from a free account to another address. For a longer list visit Yahoo's directory of Forwarding Services.
- On occasion a well intended individual will email an interesting BDSM related note to several friends and mailing lists and unintenionally included all their addresses in the "TO:" field. When this happens every recipient's email address is visible to all the other recipients. Even though the harm might be negligable and the intentions good, this might compromise someone's privacy. To prevent all the email addresses from being visible to all the users it's best to use only your own address in the "TO:" field and include all the other address in the "BCC:" (Blind Carbon Copy) field.
- Tracking Spam To Its Source
- Network Abuse Clearinghouse is intended to help the Internet community to report and control network abuse and abusive users.
- Many spammers collect email addresses from newsgroups messages like the ones at alt.personals.bondage and soc.sociology.bondage-bdsm. Since they use special harvesting computer programs, many regular newsgroup posters avoid winding up on the junk mail lists by configuring their Mail and News Preferences to give out their E-Mail and Reply-To addresses with extra characters. For example, an e-mail address such as firstname.lastname@example.org would be posted with a email address and reply to address of user@NOSPAM.domainname.com. The poster's signature file would include directions to "remove .NOSPAM from address before replying." If the spam marketer tries to send e-mail to a server called NOSPAM.domainname.com, the mail will just bounce back. (For other tips on hiding your email address from spammers, read the design tip Hide From Email Spiders from NetMechanic.)