London in August 2020 saw scenes that would not be out of place in a science fiction fantasy. Protestors gathered outside of the country’s Department for Education and rallied to ‘dismantle the algorithm’. The algorithm in question was a statistical model designed to standardise grades for the country’s GCSE A-level examinations (the equivalent of 12th board exams in India).
Data trusts have emerged as a recent but popular formulation to refer to a set of legal and institutional practices of data governance by collectives. In the Draft Report, a ‘data trust’ refers to an institutional structure with certain shared protocols for containing and sharing data. The Draft Report frames a ‘data trust’ as a ‘data pool’ of sorts, to hold data from various sources, which is to be managed by public authorities.
In the last post, we examined the Government of India’s Draft Report on Non-Personal Data, and its justifications for regulating NPD for ‘economic benefit’. This post examines the concept of ‘group privacy’, which has been presented as a justification for the regulation of NPD.
In the previous post, we introduced the Draft Report of the Committee on Non-Personal Data Regulation and analyzed its conception of ‘Non-Personal Data’ (“NPD”) as a category for regulation. There, we wrote about how the contours of NPD (as defined under the Draft Report) will necessarily entail conflicts with the proposed personal data protection regime in India. In this post, we set out to examine and critique the Committee’s justifications for why ‘Non-Personal Data’ should be regulated, in particular, on the ‘economic value’ justification for regulation.
In September 2019, the Ministry of Information Technology, Government of India, formed a Committee of Experts (“Committee”) to deliberate on the issue of ‘Non-Personal Data’ and to suggest an appropriate regulatory framework for the subject. The Committee’s initial report, (“Draft Report”) was released for public comment on July 12, 2020. In the next few posts, we will summarise, reflect on and critically analyze the concepts presented in the Committee’s report. This post focuses on the concept of ‘non-personal data’ as a category for regulatory efforts under the Draft Report.