Digital infrastructure and digital rights go hand-in-hand

ABCNewsLogo I was interviewed on ABC PM by Mandie Sami about California’s new social media “eraser law”. As Mashable reports, “the law requires websites to both remove content and provide notice of the removal when a requested by a minor (under age 18).” Techcrunch and NPR, among other sites, have pointed out the bizarre constraints of the law that may make it unworkable–it may even open up a can of legal worms–but the aspect that I am interested in is that it gives people a positive digital right. Indeed one of the most interesting aspects is that it uses the ‘think of the children’ stance to provide this positive right for minors, as opposed to taking away their rights or the rights of adults.

The other point that I made, and the only part that made it into the report, was that digital rights need to go hand-in-hand with digital infrastructure, such as the NBN. When a nation is building such a large and forward looking infrastructure, the social impact of the infrastructure need to be considered, especially given the pervasive nature of this particular infrastructure. No matter what NBN we end up with, positive digital rights are crucial to how we will use the Internet.

Listen to the interview:

Sami, M. (2013, September 25). New law gives teens the right to delete online posts. ABC PM.

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