They've given themselves a out for refusing to give you your data if you ask for it
From the jw.org global data page
"Upon receipt of your written request, after you provide sufficient evidence of your identity and enough information to permit us to identify your personal data, the applicable data controller will fairly consider granting the request by balancing the interests of the individual in gaining access to data or correcting or deleting data against the legitimate interests of the organization, including whether granting the request would endanger the organization’s right to religious freedom and practice. We will also notify any third-party recipients of the necessary changes.
Please note that your data may not be erased if processing is required by law or if the data may be kept on other legal bases. For example, the religious organization has an interest in permanently maintaining data regarding an individual’s status as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Deleting such information would unduly infringe on the organization’s religious beliefs and practices. Requests to delete personal data are subject to any applicable legal reporting or document retention requirements imposed on us. You may also lodge a complaint with your local data protection authority about the processing of the data you have provided through this website."
You can see here that they also have allowed themselves the right to keep your data regardless of wether you want them to or not, can this be legal? Or are they banking on the rank and file not challenging this?
It's going to take complaints or lawsuits (whatever is the legal action to take) to bring them to their knees. I think a lot will depend on what kind of "teeth" this new law has to use against violations. Three will have to be some serious monetary penalties to motivate WTS.
If it's as "toothless" as what is so far demonstrated by the Aussie Royal Commission, then this law is nothing more than a condom -- something that gives you a false sense of security while being screwed.
For example, the religious organization has an interest in permanently maintaining data regarding an individual’s status as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Deleting such information would unduly infringe on the organization’s religious beliefs and practices.
This is disturbing
From what I have read about the new privacy laws around protecting personal data, my understanding is that the individuals' rights come before an organization's rights. I could be wrong about this, but the general thrust surrounding the discourse about these data protection laws was that it gave power to the person
This statement on the org's position clearly places the org's rights over the person's rights
Disturbing (the more I read that last sentence, the more it doesn't make sense)*
Maybe I need to go do some more reading...
* I think I got it. I couldn't figure out what "religious practice" could be threatened by deleting member information. I think they mean "disfellowshipping" as a religious practice. Being that it would be essential to keep records on who was good and who was bad. How can they shun if they don't know who to shun? I guess they are the keepers of the book of life
" Data controller will fairly consider granting the request by BALANCING the INTERESTS OF THE INDIVIDUAL in gaining access to data or correcting or deleting data against the LEGITIMATE INTERESTS OF THE ORGANIZATION, including whether GRANTING the request would ENDANGER THE ORGANIZATION'S RIGHT TO RELIGIOUS FREEDOM AND PRACTICE. "
Give me a freaking break. What about the JW INDIVIDUALS right to religious freedom & practice ? How in the hell does deleting information a JW doesn't want on the WT Society's database " infringe " on WT Society's " right to religious freedom & practice "? . What bullshit. All it infringes on is the WT Society's ability to exercise ultimate control over each and every JW who doesn't want to be on the database !
I swear to god man, after reading the WT quotes in the opening post about the " organization's needs being more important than the individual's needs " ? I swear- Ted Jaracz has been secretly brought back from the dead and is sitting in on GB meetings these days. Those were his exact words 37 or 38 years ago. This organization is going from bad to worse quickly. No wonder our JW relatives won't leave this dangerous cult ! If they are watching every move they make and can't even have peace when they take a shit in the restroom thinking little camera's are watching them- Jesus H. Christ.
It's George Orwell's 1984 again in a VERY real way. Sick & dangerous. Peace out, Mr. Flipper
Think about how many JW paedophiles would love to have their personal history deleted!
Even if WT assures a person all their personal information has been deleted, how would the person verify that actually occurred and there isn't info remaining on file including within backup files stored off-site?
While government's may enact laws regarding personal freedom including the retention of information on individuals, there is no 'privacy police' to verify compliance, making it an honor based system. WT has proven itself to have no honor.
As there is no bible precedent for keeping records on fellow Christian's, WT cannot really justify doing so as a religious requirement or practice.
Do other Christian religions (ie: Catholic, Anglican, C of E, etc) maintain large database of member information or are JWs 'unique' in this too?
The Fall Guy: There are other ways to track pedophiles, like calling the police and letting them do their job?? Though not foul proof, in the long run, I am sure it will be much more efficient then what the JWs have ever done.
That being said, I believe a religion should have the right to keep records on ex members for the same reason I want a company to be able to keep data about its past employees.
Incognito: As there is no bible precedent for keeping records on fellow Christian's, WT cannot really justify doing so as a religious requirement or practice.
Actually, WT has found Biblical justification for record keeping on "fellow Christians" in the past.
In 1941, as a part of the "Children of the King" conventions, 15,000 children (and their parents) were registered. This is how the record keeping was justified on "Biblical" grounds:
There are many thousands of children that have had the privilege of coming to this convention, and parents are lined up by the thousands registering themselves and their children - something that has never occurred in history since the convention called by King Hezekiah in days of old, and recorded for our comfort.
Although aspects of this are unique to JW organization, many aspects are not.
Organizations do have the right to refuse requests by individuals to delete their name or details. For example, individuals who have been declared bankrupt and/or have failed to honor debts. Organizations also have the right to retain the name and records of those who have left, been fired etc.
It is not too much of a stretch to add that a religious organization will not delete the names and details of deemed "opposers" who may have a vested interest in "disappearing" from the organization's radar.
Many organizations also will not allow individuals to access their information that contains third party information. For example, member B notifies an organization of "concerns" about member A. Member A then requests the name and details of member B. If the organization has reason to believe that Member A may harass or take action against Member B, the organization has a right to refuse to divulge the third party's name and details.