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Cory Doctorow: Alice, Bob and Clapper: What Snowden taught us about privacy

Sat, Oct 25, 2014 at 7pm

at Kane Hall
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The Center for Digital Arts and Experimental Media (DXARTS), Henry Art Gallery, and the UW Tech Policy Lab presents "Alice, Bob and Clapper: What Snowden taught us about privacy" with author and activist Cory Doctorow.

It's the 21st century and the Internet is the nervous system of the information age. Treating it as a platform for jihad recruitment that incidentally does some ecommerce and video on demand around the edges is blinkered, depraved indifference.

The news that the world's spies have been industriously converting every wire, fiber and chip into part of a surveillance apparatus actually pales in comparison to the news that the NSA spends $250,000,000 every year to undermine the security of the devices we trust our lives to — literally.

Can technology give us privacy, or only take it away? Are we headed for Orwell's future? Huxley's? Kafka's? Do we have to choose, or do we get all three (if we're not careful)?

Doctorow’s novels Little Brother, Homeland, and forthcoming book Information Doesn’t Want to Be Free address issues of privacy, surveillance, copyright, cryptography, and social activism. Doctorow is a co-editor of the popular weblog Boing Boing (, and a contributor to The Guardian, The New York Times, Publishers Weekly, Wired, and many other publications. He was formerly Director of European Affairs for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a nonprofit civil liberties group that defends freedom in technology law, policy, standards, and treaties.

This lecture is a preface to Surveillance & Privacy: Art, Law, and Social Practice, a multi-day symposium (November 20-22) focusing on the response of artists and cultural institutions to issues related to privacy and surveillance. Examining historical attitudes, contemporary perspectives, and prognostications about the future of privacy, the symposium will explore how changes in technology, law, and social practices intermingle and impact public perceptions and cultural behavior. Among the works featured for analysis during the symposium is the Henry’s interactive art installation Sanctum, created by UW professors and artists James Coupe and Juan Pampin and installed on the museum’s façade. In addition to project-focused sessions and panel discussions(November 22, Henry Auditorium), the symposium will feature evening lectures by Marc Rotenberg (November 20, Kane Hall) and Edward A. Shanken (November 21, Henry Auditorium).

Tickets will also be available for sale at the Henry starting on October 19th. Admission at the door will be cash only.

Kane Hall

Northern Edge of Red Square
University of Washington

Seattle, WA 98105

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