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Critically Speaking

Oct 21, 2020

Are you online? Have you ever been online? Do you have a phone? You have a digital footprint. Many of us have heard of this phrase, but what actually is it, and what does it mean. In this episode, Therese Markow and Kade Crockford discuss just that. From the Cambridge Analytica Scandal, to the changing purpose of fusion centers and government databases, and what companies know about us from just three main sources. The government has tried to use these databases as surveillance to create predictive models, however, many reports have come out and disproven the effectiveness of these models, yet they continue to be in use based on those sources. This creates additional problems with the 1st and 4th Amendment rights. 



 Key Takeaways:

  • In the United States, unlike in Europe, we lack any comprehensive consumer privacy law that is sufficiently protective of our rights and our interests in an era in which digital technologies are ubiquitous.
  • The idea that the FBI should be wiretapping every single person who has anti-black or anti-Jewish, or anti-gay political views is not possible, because there are so many of those people. And it wouldn't make sense from a public safety perspective, because the vast majority of people who hold even extremist political views will never commit extremist political violence.
  • The Department of Homeland Security found that predictive modeling was not a useful tactic when it comes to anti-terrorism or counterterrorism. House Republicans put out a report, finding that fusion centers had produced little to no intelligence of value, had violated civil rights and civil liberties of both people on the left and the right, and had contributed nothing to the nation's fight against terrorism.
  • These are political problems. These are all infrastructures and architectures and political and legal systems that human beings created. So we can change them, we absolutely have the power to change them. 


"It shouldn't be that we leave it up to the user, the end-user, the consumer of consumer technologies, to be a privacy expert, to be a lawyer, to be able to read and understand these complex terms of service agreements or privacy policies, particularly in a situation in which people don't have a lot of alternatives to using those products." —  Kade Crockford


Connect with Kade Crockford: Bio: Kade Crockford  

Twitter: @onekade




Connect with Therese:


Twitter: @CritiSpeak




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