Press

CIS in the news.

  • Subpoena to Encrypted App Provider Highlights Overbroad FBI Requests for Information

    Date published: 
    October 11, 2016

    "According to Al Gidari, the director of privacy at Stanford University’s Center for Internet and Society and a former attorney for many of the major technology companies — requests for transactional data for an application like Signal should probably require a court order rather than a subpoena, or what’s known as a 2703 (d) order.

    “I would say that upstream and downstream providers as listed in the Signal subpoena is outside the scope” of what FBI can ask for, he wrote in an email. He compared this information to “email header information.”

  • Crime-prediction tool PredPol amplifies racially biased policing, study shows

    Date published: 
    October 9, 2016

    "Malkia Cyril, executive director of the Oakland-based Center for Media Justice, says Oakland's legislators don't care that PredPol hasn't proven to be effective.

    "Predictive policing is clearly not a solution, and it'll transfer existing bias and existing iniquities in the current policing system into a predictive approach," Cyril said. "It's not technology that makes the place a city more efficient and a better place to live. For us, it'll make the city unlivable.""

  • Appeals court restores previously-dismissed surveillance lawsuit

    Date published: 
    October 8, 2016

    "Riana Pfefferkorn, a legal researcher and attorney at Stanford University, told Ars:

    With there being a fair number of cases out there that have taken a pretty dim view of plaintiff standing in these sorts of mass surveillance cases—he will have an uphill battle unless he has an extra ace up the sleeve to show that he was personally subjected to the surveillance that he was challenging."

  • Will Yahoo Face Lawsuits Over Email Surveillance?

    Date published: 
    October 6, 2016

    "That order grants Yahoo immunity, said Albert Gidari, director of privacy at Stanford University's Center for Internet and Society. "I think it is pretty clear that if Yahoo rendered technical assistance to the government pursuant to a FISA order or directive, it faces no liability for doing so and is immunized for doing so," Gidari said in an email.

  • Ambiguity surrounds IC body camera policy as deadline nears

    Date published: 
    October 5, 2016

    "Harlan Yu, a principal at Upturn, a technology consulting firm, studies how new technologies affect civil rights. He said for a policy to be beneficial to the campus community, it needs to succeed in all criteria.

    “I would look closely at the scorecard, at each of our eight criteria, and see that the campus police eventually scores a green in each of their criteria,” Yu said.

  • Robot Law, book review: People will be the problem

    Date published: 
    October 5, 2016

    "In 2012, Ryan Calo and Michael Froomkin -- law professors at the Universities of Washington and Miami respectively -- sensed that robots were at approximately the stage of the internet circa 1988, and began to think about how to preemptively create good policy about them. Where, they asked, were the legal conflicts going to be? What new laws will be needed, what existing laws can be adapted, what metaphors will apply?

  • Sony brings hammer down on Wiener’s Katy Perry drag-queen video

    Date published: 
    October 5, 2016

    "Ben Depoorter, a professor at UC Hastings College of the Law who is an expert in copyright law, says this is typical of entertainment companies that worry about alienating potential buyers by having their performers associated with politics. Exhibit A is the country group the Dixie Chicks, who criticized then-President George W. Bush on stage in 2003 and faced a backlash that nearly ended their careers.

  • Robots Are Developing Feelings. Will They Ever Become "People"?

    Date published: 
    October 4, 2016

    "Robots can show emotions without actually having emotions, though. "Robots are now designed to exhibit emotion," says Patrick Lin, director of the Ethics + Emerging Sciences Group at California Polytechnic State University. "When we say robots have emotion, we don't mean they feel happy or sad or have mental states. This is shorthand for, they seem to exhibit behavior that we humans interpret as such and such.""

  • Yahoo secretly scanned customer emails for US intelligence

    Date published: 
    October 4, 2016

    ""I've never seen that, a wiretap in real time on a 'selector,"' said Albert Gidari, a lawyer who represented phone and Internet companies on surveillance issues for 20 years before moving to Stanford University this year. A selector refers to a type of search term used to zero in on specific information.

    "It would be really difficult for a provider to do that," he added."

  • How Scared Should I Be of the Singularity?

    Date published: 
    October 4, 2016

    "And while it is a scary thought that—singularity or not—autonomous robots might be on the battlefield soon, it's also worth noting that robot soldiers will most likely suck for a long time according to Peter Asaro, philosopher of science and technology at the New School, and a spokesperson for the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots.

  • The True Cost of Westworld's Robot Sex

    Date published: 
    October 3, 2016

    "Patrick Lin, Ph.D., the director of the Ethics and Emerging Sciences Group at California Polytechnic University, fears that sexbots might make us less human. “The fear is that people will become less in the habit of seeking consent and more into imposing their will and desires on others,” he told Inverse in an e-mail.

  • In the race for drone delivery, the U.K. is way ahead of the U.S.

    Date published: 
    October 3, 2016

    "“I think people forget how lucky the U.S. got with the internet,” said Ryan Calo, a technology law professor at the University of Washington.

    The reason why all the most popular internet companies are American, says Calo, has as much to do with these early rules of the road as it does with the fact that the internet was invented in the U.S."

  • How the Legacy of Slavery Is Very Much Still with U.S.

    Date published: 
    October 3, 2016

    "AMY GOODMAN: On Saturday, just before I sat down with Ava DuVernay, I sat down with two of the people featured in the film. Among those who are in the film, Michelle Alexander, Angela Davis—Common writes the music—but Malkia Cyril of the Center for Media Justice and Kevin Gannon of Grand View University in Iowa. I started by asking Malkia what she wanted the film to convey.

  • Researchers ask federal court to unseal years of surveillance records

    Date published: 
    September 30, 2016

    "Two lawyers and legal researchers based at Stanford University have formally asked a federal court in San Francisco to unseal numerous records of surveillance-related cases, as a way to better understand how authorities seek such powers from judges. This courthouse is responsible for the entire Northern District of California, which includes the region where tech companies such as Twitter, Apple, and Google, are based.

  • Elon Musk, billionaire tech idealist and space entrepreneur

    Date published: 
    September 30, 2016

    "“Elon Musk is a great visionary and a great inventor, and you have to admire his ambition and his moxie,” says Patrick Lin, philosophy professor and head of the emerging sciences group at California Polytechnic. “But it does seem he has a blind spot for ethical issues and their impact.”

    Putting humans on Mars, he adds, could spread our shortcomings through the solar system: “It sounds like we’re going to be exporting our problems to another rock.”"

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