Set the Default to Open

Nowhere is the end of linearity more important than our individual rights, and Set the Default to Open takes a new look at this issue from both a legal and technology perspective.

From the introduction to the article in the forthcoming Texas Review of Law and Politics, Volume 14, Issue 1:

Rugged individualism and religious and economic freedom are among the most important factors that have contributed to the growth of U.S. global power and prestige and the welfare of its citizens since the founding of the original colonies. The trajectory of freedom has not always been smooth; however, the United States has remained a powerful example of the benefits and resilience of constitutional democracy. It has weathered a civil war and two world wars, grown from the shores of the Atlantic to the northern reaches of the Pacific, become a global economic and technological powerhouse, and even treated the great wound of slavery.

In the midst of this success the underlying tension in constitutional democracy—the force behind U.S. power and prestige—has the capacity to muddle the national vision. Tension between individual rights and the state is not new. It stretches from antiquity to the Renaissance to the modern world. The U.S. Constitution represents an attempt to codify the social contract between the government and its citizens in an enduring document that supports a functioning government and society. Continue Reading →

WIRED | Is Online Privacy a Generational Issue?

  • October 1, 2009  |
  • 9:00 am  | Categories: Electronic Geek

    “It seems like every time I talk to people about privacy, there’s a feeling that younger users of online tools simply don’t care about the issue. Often, I am asked why privacy advocates like CDT push government and industry to protect privacy more robustly- when ‘no one cares’? In short, people seem to be asserting that digital natives like myself do not value privacy online. While this point is oft repeated, I think that this argument is flawed, and does not address the subtleties of privacy in the cloud, social networks, and other new online technologies. Simply put, these technologies are giving digital natives (really, all users) greater control over their information – and we use it.”

    CLOUD Take: CLOUD, Inc. agrees with Heather West, policy analyst at the Center for Democracy & Technology, and writer of this guest post at Geek Dad.  The time for greater control of our information has arrived, and the locus of that control should not be at the website but instead at the user, the individual.

    Continue Reading →

    Combining Health and the Vast Power of the Internet

    Advertising Age reports that the FDA will hold hearings on how drug companies use Web 2.0. And just in time, too, as the world marches toward Web 3.0. Don’t tell the FDA, but their regulations could be obsolete if Web users unite behind a new standard that puts individuals — not companies — in charge of their own data. CLOUD has published two papers on the standard as work to move from the Internet corporate Web paradigm to the Internet personal connection paradigm proceeds apace.

    Consider this as you watch the FDA’s work in this area: Why limit improving health tools to the Web alone? The Internet’s power to connect people goes far beyond the browser paradigm. Check out CLOUD’s perspective from a higher altitude.

    There is no There There on the Internet

    I am at the Personal Democracy Forum in NYC, and as the many great panels and conversations unfold, I realized that I needed to post some of my recent conversations around social networking into the public sphere.

    As more and more of us tap into destination sites like FaceBook, LinkedIn and MySpace, it is critical to understand that like email, these types of all-in-one sites are very unInternet.

    The most critical aspect of the Internet is that there is no there there. Continue Reading →

    Networked Content, Networked Communities, Empowered People

    This past Friday, I had the pleasure of being a guest lecturer for a Digital Media class in the Department of Advertising at the University of Texas at Austin. The class is deep into the semester and about to begin their semester project, fusing Web 2.0 and social networks. This is a topic that is close to my heart and one I enjoyed sharing some thoughts on.

    Professor Gene Kincaid has assigned excerpts from The ClueTrain Manifesto, a book that has driven much of my thinking regarding the Internet over the past several years. In the context of Digital Media and advertising, it could not be a better text. Its focus on ‘conversations’ captures the essence of marketing and the power of evolving social networks and Web 2.0. Continue Reading →