Many people view innovation as a threat to privacy and fear that the growth of digital networks will ultimately end privacy as a practical matter. In fact, technological innovation is often driven by the need to protect sensitive information in areas ranging from eHealth and eCommerce to cloud computing and national security. Without effective privacy protection, new innovations in these areas will be ineffective and counterproductive. This panel will explain how the need for privacy drives innovation and explore the reciprocal relationship between the promotion of privacy and the promotion of innovation. It will discuss questions such as how does the demand for privacy shape technological design. In what areas do we need additional privacy protections and in which areas does lack of privacy potentially impede innovation? What is the best way to reframe the scholarly debate about privacy to focus on the benefits of pro-privacy innovation?
Grace Murray Hopper Professor of Computer Science, Yale University
Sharona Hoffman, Professor of Law, Professor of Bioethics, Case Western Reserve University
Frank A Pasquale, Schering-Plough Professor in Health Care Regulation and Enforcement, Seton Hall School of Law
Ryan Calo, Research Fellow, Stanford Law School
Panel Two: How to innovate to protect privacy: The case of Web 2.0 (2:30-3:45)
Web 2.0 seems inherently to be in tension with privacy. Or is it? This panel will bring together leading scholars on networked social life to discuss how innovation can protect privacy in the context of the social technologies of Web 2.0. They will do so with an eye toward considering both how business models and design decisions erode privacy online, and how we can design platforms that enable us to better manage our online identities across diverse social settings. Some of the key questions addressed by the panelists will include: what are the expectations of users about privacy when they make social contact and share information online? How should scholars think about privacy in the context of online behavior and sharing, when billions of individuals make their personal details and information on their social relationships visible to third parties? How can we innovate in the design of online social spaces so that users are aware of the publicity and visibility of what they share? What are the innovations that users need to manage their personal information so as to control its flow across diverse social contexts online? Finally, how do we balance empowering users to protect their privacy with business models premised on making information public?
Daniel Kreiss, Postdoctoral Associate in Law and Fellow, Information Society Project
Helen Nissenbaum, Professor, New York University, Media, Culture, and Communication & Computer Science. Senior Faculty Fellow, Information Law Institute
Bryan Choi, Postdoctoral Associate in Law and Kauffman Fellow, Information Society Project
Panel Three: Pro-Privacy Innovations to Promote Free Expression (4:00-5:30 p.m.)
New digital technologies have created unprecedented opportunities for individuals to organize and express themselves politically. These same technologies, however, can also be used by governments and private actors for surveillance and can chill expression and association. For example, state governments can spy on individuals and surveil unpopular groups; corporations can make collection and collation of personal data central to business models to an extent that inhibits the activities and choices of individuals. Technological designs can make individuals feel insecure and unwilling to risk exposure. This panel will consider what kinds of technological innovations best promote free expression by securing privacy. When are anonymity and privacy relevant to free speech and association in the digital age? When is the threat of exposure beneficial and when is it harmful? What is the correct balance between the ability to leak or display information about individuals and the ability to keep sensitive information secure and how does technological design affect this delicate balance? What kind of privacy protecting technologies are most useful in protecting free speech and association in countries that seek to monitor or repress political or cultural dissent?
James Grimmelman, Associate Professor at New York Law School
Marc Rotenberg, Executive Director, Electronic Privacy Information Center