This free public program, co-sponsored by the Nation Institute, is inspired by the publication of Scheer’s new book--They Know Everything About You: How Data-Collecting Corporations and Snooping Government Agencies Are Destroying Democracy.
In the first week of June 2013, the American people discovered that for a decade they had unknowingly traded their individual privacy for the chimera of national security. The revelation that the federal government has full access to all phone records and the vast trove of presumably private personal data posted on the Internet has brought the threat of a surveillance society to the fore. From wiretapping to lax social media security, from domestic spy drones to sophisticated biometrics, both the United States government and private corporate interests have dangerously undermined the delicate balance between national security and individual sovereignty. To what end may consumer convenience be subverting democratic freedoms? Is data collecting a threat to democracy? A panel of journalists, computer and data scientists, and media analysts explore the intersection of privacy and democracy in the modern era.
Edward W. Felten is the Robert E. Kahn Professor of Computer Science and Public Affairs at Princeton University, where he is also the founding Director of the Center for Information Technology Policy, a cross-disciplinary effort studying digital technologies in public life. He was the first Chief Technologist for the Federal Trade Commission from January 2011 until September 2012. Felten’s research interests include computer security and privacy, and public policy issues relating to information technology. Specific topics include software security, Internet security, electronic voting, cybersecurity policy, technology for government transparency, network neutrality, and Internet policy. His weblog, at freedom-to-tinker.com, is widely read for its commentary on technology, law, and policy.
Jen Lowe is an independent data scientist and researcher at Datatelling, where she brings together people, numbers, and words. She teaches in SVA’s Design for Social Innovation program, cofounded the School for Poetic Computation, taught at NYU ITP, and researched at the Spatial Information Design Lab at Columbia University. She’s spoken at SXSW and Eyeo and is a member of Deep Lab. Her work has appeared in Scientific American, the New York Times, Fast Company and Popular Science. Her research, writing, and speaking explore the promises and implications of data and technology in society. Her education is in applied math and information science.
Helen Nissenbaum is Professor of Media, Culture and Communication, and Computer Science, at New York University, where she is also Director of the Information Law Institute. Her work spans social, ethical, and political dimensions of information technology and digital media. She has written and edited eight books, including Privacy, Big Data and the Public Good: Frameworks for Engagement, with Julia Lane, Victoria Stodden and Stefan Bender; Values at Play in Digital Games, with Mary Flanagan; and Privacy in Context: Technology, Policy, and the Integrity of Social Life. Her research publications have appeared in journals of philosophy, politics, law, media studies, information studies, and computer science.
Robert Scheer is the editor-in-chief of the Webby Award–winning online magazine Truthdig, professor at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, and co-host of Left, Right & Center, a weekly syndicated radio show broadcast from NPR’s west coast affiliate, KCRW. His many books include The Pornography of Power, The Great American Stickup, and most recently, They Know Everything About You: How Data-Collecting Corporations and Snooping Government Agencies Are Destroying Democracy (books will be available for purchase and signing at this event).
Mattathias Schwartz (moderator) is a staff writer at the New Yorker and a contributor to the New York Times Magazine and the London Review of Books. He recently wrote for the New Yorker on the NSA’s bulk metadata program. Schwartz’s investigation into the 2010 massacre in Tivoli Gardens, Jamaica, won the Livingston Award for international reporting.
This program is co-sponsored by the Nation Institute.
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