Young Internet users, entrepreneurs and advocates will be the expert respondents in this session which is aimed at illuminating current and future issues. Discussion points will include the positives and negatives of hyper connectivity, online security/safety, copyright, the future of the media and information, and the future of identity and privacy in social networks, virtual reality worlds and online games.
Friday October 2, 2009. Schedule: 1:45 pm to 3:30 pm
Organizing team Lillie Coney, Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) Derrick Cogburn, American University/Syracuse University Amina Fazullah, Public Interest Research Group Walda Roseman, Compass Rose International Katitza Rodriguez, Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) Stephen Balkam, Family Online Safety Institute Nathaniel James, OneWebDay Janna Anderson, Elon University
Moderator Nathaniel James, OneWebDay
Discussant Stephen Balkam
Panel/Speaker Aaron Eilbott, Sophomore student Kim Ngyuyen, EPIC Fellow Randy Gyllenhaal, Imagining the Internet Alex Trice, Imagining the Internet (Elon University) James Dubick, Online Director Student Chapter, Public Interest Research Groups (Oregon) Sebastian Bernal, School of International Service, American University
Format of the session Interactive with interventions from the floor after each of the following topics have been discussed by the panel:
1. Let's start with what young people do online today. Which social networks, online games, virtual worlds do U.S. youth currently use? Why are these popular - what drives this use? Are there any dangers to being "hyperconnected" and can you spend too much time online?
3. Let's talk about the future of being an informed citizen. Where do young people today get the information used to form their world view - the type of information your parents and grandparents traditionally received by use of newspapers, radio and television to inform their voting and other key decisions? As news-and-information organizations move online how can they continue to provide excellent coverage of vital issues in a digital world where advertising revenue does not provide the support it once did? How do they reach out to young people effectively to inform? What is the future of news?
4. Let's talk about the ownership of creations and ideas - sometimes lumped into the legal concept of "copyright." Let's see a show of hands on the panel on the following questions: Raise your hand if you DO believe that many or most of the young people you know have used, viewed or own at least one "ripped" film, video or piece of music. Raise your hand if you DO NOT think the current industry attitudes and government laws of ownership are the right fit to be fair to creators and users in a digital age. How can creators and users work to change the antagonistic atmosphere surrounding the idea of "ownership" today?
5. Let's talk about security. In an age where all information is available online, all information is also more vulnerable. The very aspects of the Internet that make it so valuable also make it dangerous. While most enjoy the opportunities found online, some mean to use it to defraud, disrupt and destroy. Cybermischief, cybercrime, cyberterror and cyberwar are all real threats. A Senate committee recently exploring ways to secure computer networks in an emergency was challenged when it considered giving the U.S. president the right to shut down Internet traffic to compromised online sites. How do you see the future of security and control - who's in charge?
6. Let's talk about control over your information. Raise your hand if you have an iPhone or Kindle, you keep all of your photos on Facebook, Flickr or MySpace or you write blogs that you post only to WordPress or Blogger. The iPhone, Kindle and other information appliances are "tethered" devices and the companies that sell them control the information you see and can even remove content from your device remotely. All of the work you have done creating your identity and sharing information with friends on Facebook, Flickr, WordPress and the like can disappear at any time if those companies fail or there is a malicious attack on them. People in the tech industry are working toward a future in which all data, all software and all control over everything is placed "in the cloud" in remote-storage data farms. Raise your hand if you think most people are unaware that this is happening. In a future where control is in the cloud, we have to have a lot of trust in the people who operate that cloud. What do you think about that kind of future?
Participant biographies James Dubick is the online director for the Student PIRGs (Public Interest Research Groups), a national network of state-based student groups that work on public interest issues. He worked as a campus organizer for the PIRGs in Massachusetts and Maryland before taking on his current job training campus organizers and students on nearly 100 campuses around the country to use online tools in activist efforts. He also manages the Student PIRGs' national online campaigns and spearheaded a nonpartisan project to turn out young voters in 2008 that succeeded in getting 40,000 students to utilize the PIRGs' online voter registration application. He also built and manages the Student Debt Yearbook, an online photo album that features personal stories from 6000 students about the impact that the high cost of college has on their lives.
Aaron Eilbott is a 15-year-old sophomore at Yorktown High School in Arlington, Virginia. Aaron is in his second year as a member of the Yorktown debate team and he works for the school's literary magazine. He spent last summer studying Spanish in Costa Rica and taking classes at University of Virginia.
Randy Gyllenhaal is a senior broadcast journalism major and Communications Fellow at Elon University. In June he earned first-place honors in the Hearst U.S. National Journalism Competition for Broadcast News. He has reported and anchored for Phoenix14News for the past 3 years, helping the newscast win first place in the national collegiate broadcast news competition in 2009. He is a documentary journalist for Imagining the Internet.
Kimberly Nguyen is a Consumer Privacy Fellow with the Electronic Privacy Information Center in Washington, D.C. As an EPIC Fellow, she will identify emerging business practices that impact consumer privacy, develop recommendations for “best practices” concerning consumer privacy issues, and draft regulatory complaints for the FTC and FCC on consumer privacy issues. Kimberly graduated from Georgetown University with a B.A. in Psychology and received her J.D. from American University Washington College of Law. During her time in law school, she served as a staff member for the Administrative Law Review, taught Constitutional law to students at Cardozo High School as part of the Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Program, and worked as a student attorney for the Glushko-Samuelson Intellectual Property Law Clinic. Through her coursework and clinical experience, she developed a strong interest in copyright and trademark law and internet privacy issues.
Alex Trice is a 19-year-old, sophomore Communications Fellow majoring in broadcast communications and new media at Elon University. She is an online editor for the university’s student newspaper, The Pendulum, and she works as a video production assistant with Elon Television and as a student researcher with Imagining the Internet. She is interested in examining the role the Internet plays in modern culture.
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