Computers, Freedom, and Privacy

Dear Potus: Table 11

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Media:Example.oggWe weren't sure that our table had a number. We were a small group from New Hampshire and Maine at a table near the back.

How to get more attention on technology policy?

1. More television and/or radio series presentations explaining details in depth.

2. Help people learn the necessary vocabulary for talking about technology. More news stories linked to background pieces explaining details.

3. Less spin, more real reporting!

4. More access to source data where feasible.

5. Debates on specific technology policies.

6. Regular video (not print) press releases (since video gets covered better).

7. Allow direct access to policy-makers through web--use the Internet's two-way features.

Topics needing more attention

1. Environmental impact. Could we use email instead of physical mail to reduce wasteful consumption and use of bad chemicals? Can incentives for companies to permit telecommuting reduce need for driving?

2. Better tech/science education. (Don't let "no child left behind" mean "no child gets ahead". That just pulls everyone toward the middle.)

3. Create incentives for companies to employ workers in the US rather than lay them off.

4. Address the Digital Divide, making sure that non-computer people can participate in government.

5. Role of privacy in a ubiquitous surveillance world.

6. Overemphasis of classifying information as secret.

Areas with superficial coverage

1. Computer security.

2. Economic impact of technology on taxpayers.

3. Impact of technology on daily life.

Technology policy categories

At the meta level:

1. Need statements of what principles underlie the technology policies so that it's easier to tell why something is being done, whether it's being done in the best way, whether something is omitted, etc.

2. Need to expose thought process behind decision making: How does government become informed on issues? How are issues decided? Transparency.

At the detail level:

1. Individual rights vs. needs of society. Is the balance different now as a result of new technology?

2. Secrecy in government and how technology can either support or minimize it.

3. Universal Access (Personal and Business)

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