Internet Ethics Issues and Action in the United States
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Presentation for the International Symposium on Internet Ethics" hosted by the Korea Internet & Security (KISA) and Korea Society of Internet Ethics (KSIE)

Presentation for the International Symposium on Internet Ethics" hosted by the Korea Internet & Security (KISA) and Korea Society of Internet Ethics (KSIE)

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Internet Ethics Issues and Action in the United States Presentation Transcript

  • 1. Internet Ethics Issues and Action in the United StatesInternational Symposium on Internet EthicsSeoul, South KoreaSept 12, 2012 Michael Zimmer, PhD Assistant Professor, School of Information Studies Director, Center for Information Policy Research University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee www.MichaelZimmer.org
  • 2. Ethical Dilemmas in the United States • Social Media • P2P File • Behavioral Sharing Targeting • Mashup Privacy Property Culture Security Content • Hacking • Sex, Violence • Government • Hate Speech surveillanceMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 3. Social Media  Explosive rise of social media  66% of online adults in U.S. use social media  Share personal information on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, MySpace  Name, email, mobile, address  Work and education history  Political views, cultural tastes, sexual orientation  Photos of self, family  Increasingly inter-connected with variety of online activities and domains PrivacyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 4. Social Media  Facebook’s strategy to monetize:  Users’ social graph  Communication & message streams  “Likes” and activities from the platform PrivacyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 5. Social Media  “Four years ago, when Facebook was just getting started, most people didn’t want to put information about themselves on the Internet. So, we got people through this really big hurdle of getting people to want to put up their full name, a real picture, mobile phone number…and connections to real people.”  Mark Zuckerberg PrivacyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 6. Social Media  Ethical dilemma: Expectations of privacy  Does willingness to share personal data point to a broad shift in privacy norms & expectations?  Or, might users simply not understand how information is made visible, captured, commodified?  Ethical dilemma: Value of privacy  Are users simply willing to trade privacy for free and valuable services?  Is it a fair trade? Informed? PrivacyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 7. Behavioral Targeting  Customizing online advertising to individual users, based on:  Social media profiles  Search query history  Types of websites visited  Actions on particular websites PrivacyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 8. Behavioral Targeting PrivacyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 9. Behavioral Targeting  Ethical dilemma: Privacy vs. free  Is it right to expect users to trade their privacy for free services, and more relevant advertising?  Do users have the means to choose privacy?  Ethical dilemma: Privacy vs. business interests  Is there a point at which the threats to privacy outweigh the desire for increased profitability  Can industry promises to behave ethically be trusted?  Ethical dilemma: Profiling & the “panoptic sort”  Concerns over dignity, accuracy, and discrimination PrivacyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 10. Actions…  Some increased oversight by federal government  U.S. Federal Trade Commission criticizing Facebook & Google over practices and user notification  Proposed “Do Not Track” mechanism for Internet users to avoid behavioral targeting  User education & advocacy  Google has impressed with its “Privacy Center” & videos  Advocacy groups work to increase awareness:  ALA: PrivacyRevolution.org  ACLU: DotRights.org PrivacyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 11. Actions…  Scholars and researchers providing new means of thinking about privacy, and understanding expectations in social media environments  Helen Nissenbaum, “Privacy in Context”  Dan Solove, “The Future of Reputation: Gossip, Rumor, and Privacy on the Internet”  boyd & Marwick, “Social Privacy in Networked Publics: Teens’ Attitudes, Practices, and Strategies”  Turow, et al, “Americans Reject Tailored Advertising and Three Activities that Enable It” PrivacyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 12. Peer-to-Peer File Sharing  Large, ad hoc networks of personal computers to facilitate the sharing of digital content, often in violation of copyright law  In 2004, an estimated 70 million people participated in online file sharing in the U.S.  By 2006, 32 million Americans over the age of 12 had downloaded at least one feature length movie from the Internet  58% of all Americans thought file sharing was acceptable in some circumstances  70% of 18 to 29 year olds PropertyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 13. Peer-to-Peer File Sharing  Legal reaction by the content industry  Litigate against P2P providers for willful infringement, shutting them down  Sue individual users accused of sharing/downloading  Letters to college kids threatening federal lawsuit, offering to settle for $3000  Joel Tenenbaum found guilty of sharing 30 songs, fined $675,000  “3-strikes” law, threatening to shutdown Internet connection after 3 warnings from ISP PropertyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 14. Peer-to-Peer File Sharing  Ethical dilemma: Ethics of P2P?  Can it be ethically justifiable to download a song to provide for one’s happiness, when prices make ownership prohibitive?  Ethical dilemma: Validity of intellectual property laws  IP was originally intended to spur creativity and protect authors’ moral rights, but increasingly viewed as restrictive of culture and motivated by corporate profits  Do property laws apply in digital environments?  Ethical dilemma: Tactics  Is it ethical to indiscriminately target college students  Is it ethical to monitor network traffic to fight possible copyright violations PropertyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 15. Digital Mashup Culture  Emerging creative process of cutting, combining, and mixing up digital files  Roots in “sampling”, the re-use of particular parts of a song in a new composition  Often “transformative” – creating entirely new works  While utilizing copyright protected material, often considered “fair use”  Transformative  Often only small amounts used  Often little impact on original market PropertyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 16. Digital Mashup Culture  Dangermouse: Grey Album  Mashing up the Beatle’s White Album with Jay Z’s Black Album  Posted for free online  Immediate take-down notice by record companies PropertyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 17. Digital Mashup Culture  Girl Talk (Gregg Gillis):  Mashups and digital sampling using small parts of popular songs  Typically uses 15-20 different snippets and loops to create new songs  Credits sources; gives music away for free PropertyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 18. Digital Mashup Culture  Ethical dilemma: Ethics of mashups & fair use  Is mashup culture sufficiently “transformative” to avoid ethical concern over the rights of original authors?  Are fair use exceptions to copyright sufficient to encourage creation? Or are they robbing copyright holders of potential markets?  What is ethically on stronger ground: protecting rights of copyright holders or encouraging creativity for the greater good? PropertyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 19. Actions…  Government continues to fight P2P and piracy  Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DCMA), and now SOPA and PIPA  Department of Justice prosecuting Magaupload.com, and seizing domain names of infringers PropertyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 20. Actions…  But, new business models are emerging  iTunes now largest music vendor in the world  Film and television industry have launched own ventures to combat piracy and illegal uploads  Hulu, official YouTube channels, etc  Some artists provide music files for free  And scholars/advocates fight for protection of fair use and mashup culture  Grey Tuesday  American University Center for Social Media PropertyMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 21. Online Sex & Violence  Online environment conducive for hosting and sharing controversial/taboo material  Long history with USENET lists, discussion forums, porn sites  Current examples include live webcams, amateur video hosting, fetish-specific communities, and “dark web”  YouTube and related sites often criticized for hosting violent videos:  Animal violence  Amateur and homeless violence  Rape videos and sexual violence ContentMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 22. Online Sex & Violence  Attempts to limit availability and control access typically fall short  Difficult to monitor, track, delete offending content from digital networks  Strong 1st Amendment tradition to allow speech, unless deemed “obscene”, and not overly restrictive  Communications Decency Act: Unconstitutional  Child Pornography Protection Act: Unconstitutional  Child Online Pornography Act: Unconstitutional  Children’s Internet Protection Act: Only Partially Constitutional ContentMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 23. Hate Speech  Internet provides new means for spread of hate speech:  Loud, cheap, and anonymous megaphone to spread ideas  Spaces and tools for hate groups to organize, communicate  Web presence can add visibility and legitimacy to otherwise fringe groups ContentMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 24. Hate Speech ContentMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 25. Online Sex & Violence // Hate Speech  Ethical dilemma: Content regulation & filtering  Is it ethical to prohibit certain content deemed unwanted by a portion of society?  Is it ethical to impose filtering, which may be imprecise and overly-restrictive?  Does ease of access and distribution online change the ethical equation of what is acceptable vs. harmful speech?  Is it ethical to regulate what people think and say (compared to physical actions)? ContentMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 26. Actions…  Internet companies try to balance speech and protecting/respecting users ContentMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 27. Actions…  Internet companies try to balance speech and protecting/respecting users  Warnings  Community standards & voting  Willing to take down offensive/illegal material in certain markets to comply with (valid) laws  Attempts to segregate content  .xxx domain  Pushed underground to the “hidden web” ContentMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 28. Hacking  White hat:  Penetration testing, ensure systems are secure  Rarely purposefully cause any damage  Often hired by companies themselves  Black hat:  Attack systems for profit, for fun, or for political motivations  Often involve modification or destroying of data  Hactivism:  Combining computer hacking for some broader social/political cause (fight power, injustice, etc) SecurityMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 29. Hacking  Anonymous  Attacks against Church of Scientology due to its aggressive copyright policies  Attacks against PayPal, MasterCard related to Wikileaks affair  Ed Felton (Freedom to Tinker)  Hacking electronic voting machines to reveal security weaknesses  WikiLeaks  Making illegally accessed material freely available SecurityMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 30. Hacking  Ethical dilemma: The Hacker Ethic  Does the ethics of “making information free” justify unauthorized access, exposure, or damage?  When can electronic civil disobedience be ethically justifiable?  Do laws preventing circumvention of security controls (like DMCA) go too far, and restrict research and criticism that might serve the public good? SecurityMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 31. Government Surveillance  Increase in government surveillance of Internet activities  Total Information Awareness  Post 9/11 attempt  Fusion centers, Trapwire  SOPA and PIPA  Stated intent to monitor and prevent piracy SecurityMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 32. Government Surveillance  Room 641A  “Secret room" in AT&Ts Folsom Street office in San Francisco  Believed to be one of several internet wiretapping facilities at AT&T offices around the country feeding data to the NSA  Exposed by whistle-blower SecurityMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 33. Government Surveillance  Ethical dilemma: Outdated security protections  Laws meant to protect users (ECPA) are outdated and irrelevant given Internet technologies  Ethical dilemma: Security vs. privacy  Which ethical value is more important?  Are “fishing expeditions” or attempts to data-mine and create predictive profiles ethical? SecurityMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 34. Actions…  Attempts to control hacking have limited success  Occasional raids on Anonymous and 4chan members  Often met with retaliation  Supporters of WikiLeaks prosecuted  Bradley Manning  Fight for Twitter account data  Advocates push for reforms  Working towards updating ECPA to better protect Internet communications from surveillance  Seeking transparency in government actions (Wikileaks) SecurityMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012
  • 35. Ethical Dilemmas in the United States • Social Media • P2P File • Behavioral Sharing Targeting • Mashup Privacy Property Culture Security Content • Hacking • Sex, Violence • Government • Hate Speech surveillanceMichael Zimmer | International Symposium on Internet Ethics | Sept 12, 2012