Published By: The Baltimore Sun, 10/11/2016
Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram have revoked commercial access to their data by social-media analysis company Geofeedia, which had been providing information obtained on their websites to police. The article discusses questions about the legality of preemptive data collecting on social media and how this information is used.
This article discusses controversial actions taken by police, as well as protests against police. It includes photos and videos of clashes between police and protesters.
Extended Discussion Questions
- Many people are concerned that laws and regulations governing privacy have not kept pace with advances in communication technology, in part because most lawmakers are not experts in the field. How might points discussed in this article be used to support that argument?
- Should police be allowed to run facial recognition software or collect data from social media at any time they choose? Should they wait for a crime to be committed, or should they just need to have a reason for concern?
- The article mentions that facial recognition software was used to identify people in a protest crowd so police could arrest anyone with outstanding warrants. What are some pros and cons of such a policy?
- The article says some people are concerned this strategy might unfairly target minorities, while Geofeedia says it has policies to prevent that. Can you think of ways Geofeedia might (try to) prevent unfair targeting?
Global Impact Learning Objectives:
- LO 7.3.1 Analyze the beneficial and harmful effects of computing.
- LO 7.4.1 Explain the connections between computing and real-world contexts, including economic, social, and cultural contexts.
Global Impact Essential Knowledge:
- EK 7.1.1C Social media continues to evolve and fosters new ways to communicate.
- EK 7.3.1A Innovations enabled by computing raise legal and ethical concerns.
- EK 7.3.1G Privacy and security concerns arise in the development and use of computational systems and artifacts.
- EK 7.3.1J Technology enables the collection, use, and exploitation of information about, by, and for individuals, groups, and institutions.
- EK 7.3.1L Commercial and governmental curation of information may be exploited if privacy and other protections are ignored.
- EK 7.4.1A The innovation and impact of social media and online access varies in different countries and in different socioeconomic groups.
Other CSP Big Ideas:
- Idea 3 Data and Information
- Idea 6 The Internet
Banner Image: “Network Visualization – Violet – Crop 10”, derivative work by ICSI. New license: CC BY-SA 4.0. Based on “Social Network Analysis Visualization” by Martin Grandjean. Original license: CC BY-SA 3.0