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Jun 20, 2006 - 03:30 PM

Beta Testing Arnold 2.0

by Carmen Balber
With more than half a million dollars from hi-tech companies who are pushing a federal effort to limit California's ability to protect consumer privacy, Arnold 2.0 could face an early test of his ability to say no to big donors. Because California is on the cutting edge of information privacy, any effort to federalize rules means weaker protections for Californians.

As the San Francisco Chronicle reports today, the companies are "hoping to avoid the passing of more restrictive [state] privacy laws in an era of growing concern over how companies use and share consumer data."

Will the "new and improved" Arnold -- who has claimed a commitment to personal privacy issues in the past, but has also vetoed legislation to boost online privacy & stayed silent on federal pre-emption of banking privacy rules -- fight his tech donors' effort to keep California from programming its own privacy rules? Or has all the money from Hewlett-Packard, eBay, Intel, Microsoft, Oracle and Sun Microsystems (six of the sponsors of the new pre-emption plan) deleted Arnold's ability to speak out on consumer privacy protections?

The gov should send a warning message to the Silicon Valley that he'll challenge any attempt to take away California's right to protect personal privacy... Or we'll know there's been no reboot of the donor-first operating system for Arnold 2.0.

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