I’ve recently moved my site to WordPress and I’m still shuffling things around.
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This is a website for people who, like me, hate receiving “unwanted” advertising and marketing information.
As a kid I used to love the adverts on TV, especially near Christmas, and I can still quote many of them today. But as an adult I have lost all interest in advertising to the point where it has now become an annoyance to me: I don’t watch live TV programmes that contain adverts, I’ve changed my radio station to BBC Radio 4 because I got sick of the PPI adverts, and I make the effort to opt-out of any and all advertising. I also love blocking website adverts with an ad-blocker. In fact, sometimes I’ll spend more time fine-tuning the add blocker on a website than I spend actually using the website. I can’t help it, I just hate the unwanted distraction of online adverts. And if anything pops-up I’ll just close down the site, as I do with surveys.
More recently, having been disillusioned with the incompetence of the ICO’s case officers repeatedly telling me that I’m wrong and they’re right, I’ve started taking companies to court. The fact is, a case officer can start at the ICO without any understanding of data protection law whatsoever yet within a matter of months they’re supposed to be expert enough to tell me that I’m wrong? It just doesn’t work so the entire process is flawed. The tax-payer is paying for the ICO to recruit case officers based on their ability to communicate – not on their ability to understand data protection law. This wouldn’t be so bad if all the case officers will forced to support their views with published guidance but the ICO insists that case officers are expected to give their own interpretation of the law. At least I’m taken seriously by most legal professionals and I’ve been very successful. The only thing that I’ve struggled with is my lack of understanding of the court procedure, but I’m getting better and will be documenting the process soon. My success rate at the moment is about 88% and that’s not including the cases that I’ve settled without having to file a claim.
In my experience, there is a pattern of abuse by most of the organisations that I do business with. If I manage to get a response to a question, whether it’s a response from customers services, the result of a formal investigation or the insistence of a senior manager, most of the time the response will contain a lie or an omission in favour of the data controller’s unfair data processing. It may change under the GDPR but I still think many companies will try it on and I’m going to continue to claim compensation if they do. Under the DPA it was Section 13 DPA, under the GDPR Article 82. Article 82 incorporates the findings of Vidal-Hall v Google and recognises claims for non-material damages. A marketing e-mail that has been sent as a result of unfair data processing will constitute non-material damages. I’m hoping that judges will increase the awards too bearing in mind how widely publicised the GDPR has been. If you’re not getting it right when the GDPR comes into force then it must be deliberate.
Mailing list vendors take note that your clients can claim compensation from you if their customers claim compensation from them. It’s highly unlikely that you have a business model that is compatible with the GDPR so you may as well call it a day.
Please note: Any opinions that I may give about a commercial organisation on these pages are my own personal opinions. However, if I quote a company, display copies of their letters or examples of their marketing on these pages, I do so on the understanding that I retain the hard copy evidence to support any claims that I may make.
Mindmydata.co.uk has been online since 2009.