Wednesday, September 14, 2011

We are watching you

In this day and age, it is virtually impossible to stay anonymous even if you are just a regular Joe. People can find you on twitter, facebook, or even track your movements through gps apps in your cellphone or your car. The concept of anonymity is largely becoming relative and the fluidity is very hard to define. These concepts remind me of Big Brother, Eagle Eye and The Dark Knight. Morgan Freeman couldn't even imagine tapping phones, how much more if we use that to track random people just because we can?

There is a new case in the United States which will be decided in the next couple of months on this subject matter. U.S. versus Jones is about the use of a GPS tracker which was put by the police on the car of a suspected drug dealer. This was done without a warrant and the issue is whether or not it constitutes unreasonable search and seizure. The American public is of the opinion that this is unconstitutional and I would also agree. There is an expectation of privacy in our lives and the notion that we could be tracked 24/7 even without our knowledge would be scary and downright encroaches on our right to privacy.

The bill of rights in the American Constitution, national laws as well as those of other countries are now in a continuous state of fluidity in terms of its application to new technologies or situations that were previously not considered when they were approved by the people and legislators. There will be a lot of new jurisprudence cropping out on similar matters in the years to come just because of little machines or apps that could prejudice the fundamental rights of each individual.

Responsiveness is the key but there will always be a lag on the laws that we need for regulation of new technologies. These things must be taken into account or else our legislature will be rendered obsolete in the very near future if they are not one now.

Entry 12

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