Technology has become increasingly important to policy debates, but these debates won’t be productive without an understanding of how the technology in question works. AEI Visiting Fellow Shane Tews interviews tech industry experts to explain how the apps, services, and structures of today’s information technology systems work, and how they shape our social and economic life.
A potential breaking point for tech antitrust (with Matt Perault and Blair Levin)
Several bills seeking to restructure American antitrust law are moving forward in both bodies of Congress. The bills specifically target Big Tech firms — namely Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google — though they follow arbitrary metrics for “bigness,” and don’t address lawmakers’ main concerns with tech platforms. Meanwhile, the Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission are also stepping up enforcement against Big Tech. With a Senate markup approaching for one of the bills, we must ask: Is Congress really prepared to pass major antitrust legislation?
On this episode, https://www.aei.org/profile/shane-tews/ (Shane) is joined by https://sils.unc.edu/people/faculty/profiles/Matt-Perault (Matt Perault), a former Facebook public policy director and professor at the University of North Carolina School of Information and Library Science, along with https://www.newstreetresearch.com/team-members/blair-levin/ (Blair Levin), nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and policy advisor to New Street Research. The three of them discuss what consumers stand to lose if these bills become law, and the political forces at play in tech antitrust.
Can technology improve supply chain management? (with Glenn Richey)
As today’s supply chain challenges create bottlenecks across the economy, consumers and businesses of all sizes are dealing with unprecedented situations involving lack of component parts, trapped inventory, and delayed deliveries. But what if we could digitize parts of the supply chain and make them more efficient? Where, if at all, can technology contribute?
On this episode of “Explain to Shane,” https://www.aei.org/profile/shane-tews/ (Shane) is joined by https://harbert.auburn.edu/directory/glenn-richey.html (Glenn Richey), Harbert Eminent Scholar and chair of Auburn University’s Center for Supply Chain Innovation. Glenn shares his expertise on the causes and effects of the current supply chain dilemma, and discusses ways that digitization and artificial intelligence can help boost supply chain efficiency.
Unpacking the complexities of online content moderation (with Julie Owono)
The debate around online content moderation is not slowing down. People remain bitterly divided over whether social media platforms should take down more content, or not moderate at all. But this issue is not limited to the US: Across the world, authoritarian regimes are using online censorship to silence dissenters, and are retaliating against citizens who share certain content online. How are content moderation experts working to solve these ever-complex issues?
On this episode, https://www.aei.org/profile/shane-tews/ (Shane) is joined by https://www.oversightboard.com/meet-the-board/julie-owono/ (Julie Owono) to discuss why we need clear principles around online speech — centered on free expression — and how these principles can be applied across different countries. Julie is the executive director of Stanford University’s https://fsi.stanford.edu/news/program-democracy-and-internet-launches-new-content-policy-society-lab-cpsl (Content Policy and Society Lab), executive director of https://internetwithoutborders.org/ (Internet Without Borders), and a member of the https://oversightboard.com/ (Facebook Oversight Board).
How is cybersecurity law being constructed? (with Jim Dempsey)
The extent to which lawyers, corporate executives, and government officials focus on cybersecurity fluctuates with the threat level posed by malicious cyber actors. In light of numerous ransomware attacks on critical industries, lawmakers are looking at more regulatory obligations to mitigate the risks these threats pose. Companies, meanwhile, are working to comply with a chaotic patchwork of rules and regulations. The field of cybersecurity law is not systematic, and industries are working through who owns the internal cyber regulatory responsibilities and compliance obligations.
In an effort to create a coherent roadmap for everyone involved in cybersecurity law, https://cyber.fsi.stanford.edu/people/james-x-dempsey (Jim Dempsey) recently published a book titled https://iapp.org/store/books/a191P000003EzusQAC/ (Cybersecurity Law Fundamentals). On this episode of “Explain to Shane,” https://www.aei.org/profile/shane-tews/ (Shane) sits down with Jim to discuss his book, along with key lessons that lawmakers, industry leaders, and lawyers would be well-advised to consider when it comes to cyber.
A privacy-friendly digital wallet for children (with Rick Lane)
How can children enjoy the groundbreaking innovations of the digital age with sufficient guardrails around their personal data? What existing laws and regulations aim to protect children online, and what steps must businesses of all sizes take to comply with them?
On this episode of “Explain to Shane,” https://www.aei.org/profile/shane-tews/ (Shane) sits down with https://www.worldwithoutexploitation.org/bios/rick-lane (Rick Lane), founder and CEO of Iggy Ventures, to discuss why his firm chose to advise and invest in https://regopayments.com/ (Rego Digital Architectures’) https://mazoola.co/ (Mazoola) app. Mazoola is the only independently certified family mobile wallet that is compliant with the https://www.ftc.gov/enforcement/rules/rulemaking-regulatory-reform-proceedings/childrens-online-privacy-protection-rule (Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act) of 1998 and https://gdpr-info.eu/ (Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation).
A spectrum roadblock for the wireless industry (with Mike O’Rielly and Harold Feld)
For several years, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has been working to modernize the use of key sections of spectrum airwaves — known as C-band — for commercial deployment. Through a series of auctions, the FCC sold the license rights to C-band airwaves to commercial 5G mobile telecommunications providers, unleashing a massive wave of private investment to enable 5G deployment. But the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recently https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-11-02/u-s-faa-issues-safety-alert-on-5g-interference-to-aircraft?srnd=technology-vpandsref=1pnqJ0TR (warned) that using C-band for 5G could interfere with air safety, reigniting a multiyear battle that many believe FCC engineers have successfully put to rest. What does the FAA’s warning mean for the future of C-band and continued spectrum deployment in the wireless industry?
On this episode, https://www.aei.org/profile/shane-tews/ (Shane) sits down with former FCC Commissioner https://www.fcc.gov/biography-former-commissioner-michael-orielly (Mike O’Rielly) and https://www.publicknowledge.org/about-us/staff/#harold-feld (Harold Feld) of Public Knowledge to discuss why the FAA issued this warning, how legitimate its safety concerns are, and how the C-band auction winners have responded.
Shane is the ‘All Things Internet’ subject matter expert
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