Privacy - we keep botching it

Mitch Joel has a post entitled The Other Side of Privacy that is worth a read as he has a practical and sobering approach to online privacy.  He starts off by saying:

You can't throw a rock and not hit a concern about privacy and the use of our data online.

This is a huge concern because us Marketers have screwed it up so royally over the years. From a lack of permission and abuse to security breaches and scams. It's so bad that government plays an active role in deciding what can and can't be done (yes, lawmakers). Still, we keep botching it. From newer media initiatives (think Facebook Beacon) to cyber-attacks (see what Sony has been dealing with), not a week goes by that some sort of privacy breach or plans for a corporation to do something funky with consumer's data isn't in the news.

Mitch basically says that it is up to users to read and understand the terms of service of online sites - and if you don't understand it, or its not to your liking, don't use the service.  And that we should just assume at the outset that nothing we do online is private or the data won't be used in some way.