Archiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2003-02 > 1044400940

Subject: [DNA] Database Privacy
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 2003 18:22:20 EST

I wonder if entering only the derived, or implied, haplotypes of progenitors
and old (pre-1850 in the U.S.) mutations would solve the problem of privacy
and the legaltities discussed by Oxford. This would mean entering only "old"
haplotypes which have been proven by a match of at least two descendants and
sufficient paper genealogy.

The haplotype would then not "belong" to any one person. The contact would
then be the project coordinator. He would know more about the paper genealogy
anyway. Many of our participants are not genealogists and wouldn't really
know where to put an orphan in the tree anyway. Most of the haplotypes in a
proven tree seem to be matches anyway, even though we hope for a lot of
single mutations to show branching.

You have to wonder if someone might contrive a lawsuit in this country
resulting from having been identified from a database, even if they gave
permission. If obesity lawsuits against McDonalds are a problem now, one can
only wonder what will occur in the future, if people cannot assume
responsibilty for their own behavior. I can see why no firm would make the
data public, even if they wanted to. It could be an expensive good deed.

Bob Stafford

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