Download A Little Knowledge: Privacy, Security, and Public by Peter M. Shane PDF

By Peter M. Shane

With the expansion of the area extensive internet and the signing of the digital Freedom of knowledge Act Amendments within the mid-1990s, know-how promised empowerment and freedom. the internet held the capability to create an educated and engaged citizenry via delivering the yankee voter entry to an almost limitless international of knowledge. After the September eleven assaults, notwithstanding, the accessibility of machine networks has turn out to be seen as a vulnerability rather than an asset. the liberty provided via expertise has more and more been changed with secrecy within the identify of safety. yet this equation of secrecy with safeguard threatens not just our liberty yet our security, as an ill-informed public has little religion in its management and is poorly outfitted to guage its vulnerabilities. a bit wisdom describes how the present administration’s crusade for unheard of secrecy has affected the functioning of our democracy and recommends six severe tenets for framing a brand new, extra open nationwide coverage on expertise and public details. The ebook argues that electorate needs to assert the price of openness in formulating new and extra efficient methods towards reconciling the imperatives of safeguard and freedom. members comprise George T. Duncan, Baruch Fischhoff, and Victor W.Weedn (Carnegie Mellon University), Alice P. Gast (MIT), Sally Katzen (University of Michigan legislation School), Richard C. Leone (The Century Foundation), John Podesta (Center for American Progress), Joel R. Reidenberg (Fordham legislation School), and Peter M. Shane (Ohio country University/Carnegie Mellon).

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Extra resources for A Little Knowledge: Privacy, Security, and Public Information after September 11

Sample text

Moreover, the new risks and the new wrinkles are often intellectually and emotionally challenging ones. They involve complex, novel phenomena. They require expertise distributed over multiple disciplines and cultures. They are dynamic and uncertain. They pose difficult tradeoffs: your money or your life, your life or your liberty, my freedom or yours. They require vigilance from already weary people. They evoke social tensions in an already complex time. Although most people could do without the additional risks, the legacy of existing risks provides them with resources for dealing with the new ones.

When an institution goes shopping for new expertise, it may be challenged to discern quality, perhaps succumbing to marketing pressure or safe, unchallenging choices. The imperfect risk communications regarding anthrax contamination, smallpox vaccination, duct tape, and national terror alert levels are some recent examples of these general tendencies. ” They draw heavily on experience with environmental and health risks, which have a legacy of problems with “wicked” properties like those of terrorism.

One is knowledge about related risks and control mechanisms. A second is inferential strategies for extrapolating beyond direct evidence. A third is methods for collecting information and critically evaluating its sources. Those sources may include officials, trusted peers, and entertaining speculators (for example, talking heads on cable news, disembodied voices on talk radio, Web sites of uncertain credibility). A fourth resource is experience in managing the emotional overlay of risks threatening physical, social, or economic security.

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