I am interested in the free exchange of ideas, which requires access to private venues for exploring new ideas among people we trust. Increasingly, conversations with friends happen online, and so for social media and other online tools to be effective means for spreading news and thoughts, we need to respect closed forums online as much as we would respect real-world private conversation spaces. For a slightly fuller discussion of this, and a response to some recent actions by tech companies, see this article.
My interest in these issues grows naturally from my background as a lawyer on free speech cases, transition to teaching, and concern for my students’ ability to use promising new technologies, which they so fully embrace, with confidence and without fear that their open-mindedness or exploration of dissident ideologies could be held against them.
I am using the opportunity of my sabbatical year to explore these issues more thoroughly. If you are willing to share your thoughts and experiences, I would greatly appreciate hearing from you. You can fill out the form below (anonymously or not) or send me an email (if you wish, encrypt it first with this public key or by searching for email@example.com on a GnuPG key server).