Guest Post by Jon Pincus Chief Technology Officer, Qworky Co-Chair,
Computers, Freedom and Privacy conference
The issue of privacy in social networks is on the cover of Time
magazine and is showing up in attack ads in political races. We're in
the midst of intense political battles over net neutrality and
cybersecurity. The one-year anniversary of the Iranian election protests
highlights the potential as well as the risks of online activism for
human rights. Issues like privacy of health-care information, the
'smart grid' and intelligent transportation systems are affecting more
and more people in their day-to-day lives.
And hey, guess what? All of these topics and more are on the agenda
for this week's 20th anniversary conference on Computers,
Freedom and Privacy in San Jose, California. On top of that, we’ll
draft a Social Network Users' Bill of Rights and wrap up the
conference with a debate and voting.
CFP is sponsored by the Association
for Computing Machinery (ACM) as part of its ongoing effort to
educate policymakers and the public on how computing and information
technologies are transforming our society. In aid of that, we're
webcasting many of the sessions, including Tuesday's opening session on Privacy and Free Speech: It's Good for Business and
Microsoft Chief Privacy Strategist Peter Cullen’s Tuesday afternoon 5
p.m. PT keynote, on The Importance of Accountable and Privacy-Centric
Organization in the Cloud Era: Why Privacy Matters.
Posted by Mary Cullinane Director of Innovation and
Strategic Initiatives, Microsoft Worldwide Education
fanfare four years ago, teenagers began their high school careers at a
new school called The School of the Future. A partnership between the School District of
Philadelphia and Microsoft, the school was built to help lead the way
toward establishing a new norm in urban education: one where mediocrity
is no longer acceptable, every child can be successful and opportunity
is provided to all, not just those lucky enough to be chosen.
never forget that day and seeing the hope in students’ eyes. You could
sense their apprehension, but also their intense desire to embark on the
This week again I will witness the power of hope and
inspiration as 117 School of the Future students walk across the stage
and become what more than 35 percent of high school freshmen in this
country do not: graduates. They have surpassed their own expectations,
and it wasn’t easy. While more than 3,000 inquisitive visitors from 50
countries walked the hallways to observe the school first hand, students
overcame many challenges: Leadership changes, social and economic
pressures, and simply the challenge of being teenagers. Now they are
graduating, and – pay close attention here – every graduate has been
accepted into a technical school, community college or university.
Posted by Peter Cullen Chief Privacy Strategist
Department of Commerce’s Internet Policy Task Force is seeking comments and holding meetings with Internet
stakeholders about “the impact of current privacy laws in the United
States and around the world on the pace of innovation in the information
economy.” The Department intends to issue a report that will likely
help shape the Administration’s policy engagement on Internet privacy.
Interest in privacy issues is more intense than ever because of the
world’s growing reliance on online interactions, the pervasive use of
mobile devices, the ubiquity of social networking and the rise of cloud
nature of the Internet as various jurisdictions come into play. Yet we
must get this right. As the Department noted in its request for
comments: “Proper use of personal information can play a critical,
value-added role, so establishing consumer trust and assuring
flexibility for innovators is vital.” We agree that it’s important to
identify policies that will help ensure “public confidence necessary for
full citizen participation with the Internet.”
Posted by Caroline Curtin Policy Counsel, U.S.
Yesterday the U.S. Senate proclaimed June as
National Internet Safety month, part of a nationwide effort to raise
public awareness of potential online threats.
we’re continually looking for new ways to share online safety tips and
tools with parents and children. Recently we worked with the nation’s
largest school system – the New York City Department of Education – to
develop a four-part Internet safety video called Clicking with Caution. The video series will be
distributed to all NYC middle-school students this week.
especially excited about this safety video because it was produced by
teens for teens. ReelWorks, a New York City-based company that mentors
teens in the art of filmmaking, produced the documentary-style videos,
which focus on online awareness, online predators, cyber-bullying and
smart gaming. As the students in the video explain during a classroom
discussion about online safety, kids know more about the Internet than
adults do, in some ways, though they may not understand the risks.
Posted by Caroline Curtin Policy Counsel, U.S. Government
A broad-based group representing the technology industry, public
interest groups, and the federal government has released a report—“Youth
Safety on a Living Internet”—that exploresindustry efforts to make the Internet a safer place
The Online Safety and Technology Working Group (OSTWG) was
established by the Broadband Data Improvement Act. Passed by Congress in
2008, the legislation directed the National Telecommunications and
Information Administration to create the OSTWG in order to examine
industry efforts to promote online safety and evaluate the development
of parental control technologies.
I participated on Microsoft’s behalf—along with more than 30 child
safety experts from the public and private sectors—in the OSTWG meetings
over the last year.
I learned many things during my year with the OSTWG, but one meeting
particularly stands out. We invited middle and high school students from
Washington, D.C. schools to talk about their experiences on the
Internet. Students expressed genuine concern for their “digital
reputations” and how unintended consequences of the pictures they post
and messages they leave on social networks could potentially affect
their ability to get into college or attain a job.