Time to forget the 'right to be forgotten'

Rather than trying to obscure the public record, a better approach for privacy regulators is to identify specific harms that individuals may face and craft targeted policies to mitigate those harms.


Net neutrality is the last hope of American democracy

Every day we see more evidence that income inequality has accelerated over the last few decades, leaving middle-class people frozen in stagnant wages, trapping the poor in permanent misery and enriching a small group of Americans as if they were...


Perhaps the IRS will use drones, too

Think of the possibilities of the drone society. If you are short on your taxes, the Internal Revenue Service could send a drone to your door with a notice. If you miss a credit card payment, your bank could send a dunning letter to you, delivered by drone!


Technology creates an inward society

Recently on CNN, former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.) appeared and discussed the ongoing stall in the fiscal-cliff talks, and delivered his take.

Congress, he said, was a much different place when he first arrived, because everyone in both parties socialized more, and they all had permanent residences in Washington. Before cellphones, the Internet, fax machines and other devices, people needed each other’s presence more to fill time, and members in both parties played golf together, went to happy hours and had family dinners and barbecues.


Privacy, Google and Facebook: Chill!

Privacy is an ongoing concern for all of us; it's a real thing. However, there're a lot of bogus headlines regarding online privacy, and I figure some perspective is good.

Most of the panic regards Google and Facebook, and almost all of it is faked, from parties who're looking for headlines or people who don't understand tech, and panicked. Let's say very little fact-checking was done.


Science subtext: Gender parity

At the White House science fair this morning, President Obama is expected to announce a new education initiative to invest $100 million into training 100,000 new teachers. Specifically, the president is trying to fend off the problem of a shortage of teachers in science, technology, engineering and math — known as STEM — in order to keep the United States competitive in the global marketplace.

While he’s not expected to talk about the dearth of women in the STEM fields, you can be sure that’s part of the larger White House agenda.


Mark Zuckerberg’s nerd manifesto

Mark Zuckerberg presses himself into the public eye. It was his insistence and demanding countenance that first brought to my mind those ancient socialist realist statues of Lenin pressing forward against the wind, oversized, waving a bronzed document, almost a hundred years ago in the century’s first great wave — worldwide wave — of “new man” generational politics. It came then from the realization that they simply had the numbers. Capital had already fled Russia. Russian gentry were now waiters in Paris and all was left were peasants; comrades then, millions upon millions of them. And the document: the three-page, single-spaced letter that Zuckerberg had prepared; a letter to potential investors for a $5 billion initial public offering of Facebook. It was a manifesto:


This Internet Spring could lead to an Internet Awakening

People have asked me about the whole SOPA thing, how bad a law it could be.

Sure, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA) are really destructive, potentially damaging U.S competitiveness and genuinely killing jobs. However, there's some good news associated with the reaction to the bad law, news that we're missing.

As an industry, we've been able to rationalize that bad laws and politics don't matter, but now we're waking up. More importantly, this has also gotten the attention of "the Internet," meaning a lot of the people who use the World Wide Web. That includes some really smart Hill staffers who believe in the democratic potential of the 'Net.