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CDT Tech Talks

Technology Podcasts

Tech Talks are a podcast imagined and created by the folks over at the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT). We're a 501(c)3 nonpartisan nonprofit organization that fights to put democracy and human rights at the center of the digital revolution. We work to promote democratic values by shaping technology policy and architecture, with a focus on equity and justice. #techtalkcdt Support CDT's work with a donation: https://cdt.org/techtalk/

Location:

United States

Description:

Tech Talks are a podcast imagined and created by the folks over at the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT). We're a 501(c)3 nonpartisan nonprofit organization that fights to put democracy and human rights at the center of the digital revolution. We work to promote democratic values by shaping technology policy and architecture, with a focus on equity and justice. #techtalkcdt Support CDT's work with a donation: https://cdt.org/techtalk/

Twitter:

@CenDemTech

Language:

English


Episodes
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Talking Tech with Paul Gowder on The Networked Leviathan

6/25/2024
It’s a modern day reality that large social media platforms deliver political information to many citizens, making these companies’ policies for removing and blocking speech critical to politics and culture. Emergencies such as the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol and the genocide of the Rohingya people in Myanmar can be traced in part to misinformation and hate speech shared online via large social media platforms. The problem of how social media companies should create policies to govern these spaces makes them uniquely quasi-governmental, a role, still developing today.

Duration:00:26:18

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Talking Tech with Grace Gedye and Matt Scherer on AI Legislation

5/31/2024
Recently, legislative bodies across the United States have exploded as lawmakers in over 10 states introduced several closely related bills to tackle AI- systems and their impacts on various facets of society. From hiring practices to education, insurance, housing, lending, government services, and even criminal sentencing, the scope of these bills is vast and far-reaching and will likely have a rippling effect across the country. Here to talk about these systems and the decisions they are responsible for making. Grace Gedye, Policy Analyst for Consumer Reports, and Matt Scherer, Senior Policy Counsel for CDT.

Duration:00:23:14

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Talking Tech with Rachel Cummings & Daniel Susser on Differential Privacy

4/4/2024
In recent years, differential privacy has emerged as a promising solution for enhancing privacy protections in data processing systems. However, beneath its seemingly robust framework lie certain assumptions that, if left unquestioned, could inadvertently undermine its efficacy in safeguarding individual privacy. Here to discuss their recent papers on differential privacy is Rachel Cummings, Associate Professor of Industrial Engineering and Operations Research at Columbia University and CDT Non-Resident Fellow and Daniel Susser, Associate Professor for the Department of Information Science at Cornell University and CDT Non-Resident Fellow.

Duration:00:29:49

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Talking Tech with Kate Ruane & K.J. Bagchi on Moody v. NetChoice & NetChoice v. Paxton

3/15/2024
On February 26, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments for Moody v. NetChoice and NetChoice v. Paxton, two pivotal cases that could alter the landscape of free expression on the internet. In this episode, we sat down with CDT’s Director of the Free Expression Project, Kate Ruane, and Vice President of the Center for Civil Rights and Technology, K.J. Bagchi to discuss the two cases that are challenging the constitutionality of the controversial Texas and Florida social media laws.

Duration:00:30:32

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Talking Tech with Nabeel Gillani on The Black Box of AI in Education

1/12/2024
In today's episode, we’ll delve into the exciting realm of Artificial Intelligence, and its transformative impact on education. The recent strides in AI have reignited curiosity about its potential to enhance learning experiences. However, it's essential to recognize that AI encompasses a diverse array of methods, capabilities, and limitations. Join us as we navigate through the nuances often overlooked by researchers, education technology firms, and other developers in the AI landscape. Here to discuss what this means and share insights from his paper, “Unpacking the "Black Box" of AI in Education”, is Nabeel Gillani, CDT Non-Resident Fellow and Assistant Professor of Design and Data Analysis at Northeastern University.

Duration:00:30:22

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Talking Tech with Mallory Knodel and Niels ten Oever On Inclusive Language in Internet Standards

12/5/2023
Back in 2018, CDT’s own, Mallory Knodel, teamed up with Niels ten Oever from the critical infrastructure lab at the University of Amsterdam to present a draft document at the internet standards governing body called the Internet Engineering Task Force, or IETF. This draft outlined a proposal that urged the community to officially reject the use of discriminatory and exclusive language in Internet Drafts and RFCs. As we persistently uncover and confront systemic racial inequality across society, it becomes equally vital to guarantee that the fundamental design comprising one of our most critical and democratic technologies– the internet– is devoid of any historically racist or prejudiced terms.

Duration:00:36:59

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Talking Tech with Sharon Bradford Franklin On FISA 702

11/21/2023
CDT’s Tech Talk is a podcast where we dish on tech and Internet policy, while also explaining what these policies mean to our daily lives. You can find Tech Talk on Spotify, SoundCloud, iTunes, and Google Podcasts, as well as Stitcher and TuneIn. Recently, the US Privacy and Civil Liberties Board released a comprehensive report on Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, commonly called FISA 702. FISA 702 is a warrantless surveillance authority that was first established in 2008. It empowers the government to designate foreigners abroad as surveillance targets and to compel communication service providers in the US to turn over their communications without court approval. Unless renewed by Congress, FISA 702 is set to expire at the end of the year and is facing serious scrutiny from Democrats and Republicans alike. In this episode, Sharon Bradford Franklin, Chair of the US Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, will explain why CDT and other groups across the political spectrum have been calling for serious reforms to Section 702.

Duration:00:24:40

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Tech Talk: Google v. Gonzalez & Twitter v. Tamneh — Talking Tech with Caitin Vogus & Jonathan Stray

8/16/2023
Note: This podcast episode was recorded BEFORE the U.S. Supreme Court's recent decisions on the crucial online free expression cases: Gonzalez v. Google and Twitter v. Taamneh. Nevertheless, we've chosen to release this episode NOW because the conversation contains important information about the potential risks to users’ free speech that is more relevant than ever. While the legal landscape may have shifted since this recording, the principles of protecting free expression and fostering an open and inclusive digital environment are not going away. In the Gonzalez and Taamneh opinions, the Supreme Court dodged any detailed consideration of Section 230 or the role of recommendation algorithms in enabling access to online speech, but we can expect that those topics will be back before the Court before long. So, let's dive into this discussion and keep advocating for the preservation of free speech in the online world. The Center for Democracy & Technology – along with six other technologists with expertise in online recommendation systems – filed an amicus brief in the case of Gonzalez v. Google. The brief urges the U.S. Supreme Court to hold that Section 230’s liability shield applies to claims against interactive computer service providers based on their recommendation of third-party content, because those claims treat providers as publishers. Here to talk a little bit about the amicus brief is Jonathan Stray, Senior Scientist at the Berkeley Center for Human-Compatible AI and Caitlin Vogus, (former) Deputy Director of CDT's Free Expression Project (currently Deputy Director of Advocacy at Freedom of the Press Foundation). More on our host, Jamal: bit.ly/cdtjamal More on Caitlin: cdt.org/staff/caitlin-vogus/ More on Jonathan: jonathanstray.com/me (CDT relies on the generosity of donors like you. If you enjoyed this episode of Tech Talk, you can support it and our work at CDT by going to cdt.org/techtalk. Thank you for putting democracy and individual rights at the center of the digital revolution.) Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:34:06

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Tech Talk: Reflecting on the Anniversary of the ADA — Talking Tech w/ Alex Givens & Ariana Aboulafia

7/26/2023
July 26 marks the thirty-third anniversary of the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), perhaps the most important piece of legislation in the history of the disability rights movement. Since the passage of the ADA, disabled people have achieved significant advances in equality; but, the spread of technology brings new concerns and new questions to mind. In this episode, you’ll hear from Alexandra Givens, President and CEO of the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT), and Ariana Aboulafia, Policy Counsel for Disability Rights in Technology at CDT, as they discuss the ADA, its legacy, and some of the most pressing issues in technology policy for disabled people. More on our host, Jamal: bit.ly/cdtjamal More on Alex: https://cdt.org/staff/alexandra-reeve-givens/ More on Ariana: https://cdt.org/staff/ariana-aboulafia/ (CDT relies on the generosity of donors like you. If you enjoyed this episode of Tech Talk, you can support it and our work at CDT by going to cdt.org/techtalk. Thank you for putting democracy and individual rights at the center of the digital revolution.) Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:23:29

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Best Practices for Protecting Reproductive Health Data—Talking Tech w/ CDT’s Andrew Crawford

6/29/2023
When the Supreme Court reversed Roe v. Wade, it enabled states to further restrict and criminalize abortion. Some states can now prosecute abortion providers, insurers, and, in some cases, even patients themselves. Some states also allow civil actions. Increasingly, law enforcement and civil litigants may turn to companies to gain access to data that could help prove that a person sought, received, aided, or provided an abortion. Many types of data can reveal sensitive information about a person’s health and healthcare choices. Search queries, browsing history, the contents of communications, and a person’s location data can all reveal such private information, despite not typically being thought of as sources of “medical” or health-related data. Because of this, companies inside and outside the healthcare sector must be responsible for carefully assessing and limiting the private information they collect, store, and share. Without thoughtful action, a company’s data practices may be complicit in sending their customers to prison or exposing them to civil litigation, for personal choices that are still legal in the majority of the United States. In the post-Dobbs era, companies must play an active role in protecting their customers' and users’ private information. Here to explain what companies can do to protect user data is Andy Crawford, Senior Counsel for CDT’s Privacy & Data project. More on our host, Jamal: bit.ly/cdtjamal More on Andy: https://cdt.org/staff/andy-crawford/ (CDT relies on the generosity of donors like you. If you enjoyed this episode of Tech Talk, you can support it and our work at CDT by going to cdt.org/techtalk. Thank you for putting democracy and individual rights at the center of the digital revolution.) Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:21:18

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The Impact of Dobbs, One Year Later — Talking Tech w/ CDT's Alex Givens & Jake Laperruque

6/21/2023
June 24, will mark the one-year anniversary of the momentous decision by the Supreme Court to overturn Roe vs. Wade. Since then, a lot has happened - states are further restricting abortions, and many have made it plain they would prosecute providers, insurers, and even patients in some cases. Some states also allow private civil actions – which has, for example, allowed an ex-husband to sue his wife’s friends for allegedly helping her get abortion medication. Increasingly, law enforcement and civil litigants may turn to companies to access data that could help prove a person sought, received, aided, or provided an abortion. Some states, however, like Washington, California, and New York, have enacted shield laws that seek to prevent in-state companies from complying with out-of-state warrants in connection with abortion investigations. In this episode, you will hear from Alexandra Givens, President and CEO of the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT), and Jake Laperruque, Deputy Director of CDT’s Security and Surveillance Project, as they dig into all the ways in which CDT has quickly sprung into action since the fall of Roe v. Wade. More on our host, Jamal: bit.ly/cdtjamal More on Alexandra: twitter.com/AlexReeveGivens More on Jake: twitter.com/JakeLaperruque (CDT relies on the generosity of donors like you. If you enjoyed this episode of Tech Talk, you can support it and our work at CDT by going to cdt.org/techtalk. Thank you for putting democracy and individual rights at the center of the digital revolution.) Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:38:26

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Tech Talk: Data Privacy After Roe v. Wade — Talking Tech w/ Alex Givens at SXSW 2023

4/21/2023
The overturning of Roe v. Wade is a watershed moment for the privacy of people seeking reproductive care. A person’s browser history, search history, location and private messages can be used by law enforcement or private citizens to pursue people who are suspected of having or aiding an abortion. When people’s most private digital information can be used against them, can tech companies change their practices to better protect their users’ privacy? As some states try to outlaw websites that tell people how to access abortion care, can advocates ensure that reliable health information remains online? In this episode, you will hear from Alexandra Givens, President and CEO of the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT); Cecile Richards, former President of Planned Parenthood; and Nabiha Syed, President of The Markup, as they discuss ways advocates are working to protect users’ privacy and access to information at this critical moment for reproductive rights. More details about this 2023 SXSW featured session: https://cdt.org/event/sxsw-featured-session-data-privacy-after-roe-v-wade/ More on our host, Jamal: bit.ly/cdtjamal More on Alexandra: https://twitter.com/AlexReeveGivens More on Cecile: https://twitter.com/CecileRichards More on Nabiha: https://twitter.com/nabihasyed (CDT relies on the generosity of donors like you. If you enjoyed this episode of Tech Talk, you can support it and our work at CDT by going to cdt.org/techtalk. Thank you for putting democracy and individual rights at the center of the digital revolution.) Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:59:32

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Tech Talk: Post-Election Audits, Disinfo — Talking Tech w/ Kate Starbird, Will Adler, Aliya Bhatia

2/24/2023
And we're back! For our first episode of 2023, we're excited to have invited Kate Starbird, Associate Professor in the Department of Human Centered Design & Engineering at the University of Washington, to join CDT's own Will Adler, Senior Technologist for the Elections & Democracy project and Aliya Bhatia, Policy Analyst for the Free Expression project to sit down together. Jamal leads us through a conversation delving into the ways in which misinformation and disinformation can have disastrous effects on election integrity and trust, both domestically and abroad. The discussion explores the misconceptions about what disinformation is and whether the term "disinformation" is even a useful term anymore ("rumoring"?), as well as important work going on by coalitions of researchers like the Election Integrity Partnership. More on our host, Jamal: bit.ly/cdtjamal More on Kate: https://twitter.com/katestarbird More on Will: https://twitter.com/wtadler More on Aliya: https://twitter.com/AliyaBhatia More on the Election Integrity Partnership: https://www.eipartnership.net (CDT relies on the generosity of donors like you. If you enjoyed this episode of Tech Talk, you can support it and our work at CDT by going to cdt.org/techtalk. Thank you for putting democracy and individual rights at the center of the digital revolution.) Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:53:35

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Tech Talk: Protecting Privacy Post-Roe — Talking Tech w/ Alex Givens & Jake Laperruque

8/18/2022
We have another exciting show for you this week! The Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization overturned Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pa. v. Casey, allowing individual states to limit or outright ban abortion. State reactions have been swift and varied, with some states outlawing abortions or significantly limiting them. Such laws will create a strong motive to track and know the identities of people who seek to obtain reproductive health care, or to provide it. Here to talk about this decision and what can be done to protect the right to privacy of people seeking reproductive care is Alex Givens, President and CEO for CDT and Jake Laperruque, Deputy Director of the CDT Security and Surveillance Project. (CDT relies on the generosity of donors like you. If you enjoyed this episode of Tech Talk, you can support it and our work at CDT by going to cdt.org/techtalk. Thank you for putting democracy and individual rights at the center of the digital revolution.) More on our host, Jamal: https://bit.ly/cdtjamal (CDT relies on the generosity of donors like you. If you enjoyed this episode of Tech Talk, you can support it and our work at CDT by going to https://cdt.org/techtalk. Thank you for putting democracy and individual rights at the center of the digital revolution.) Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:20:19

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Tech Talk: Shadow Banning — Talking Tech w/ Ana Valens & Gabe Nicholas

8/2/2022
We have another exciting show for you this week! Controversy around content moderation on social media platforms is a perennial topic in the tech news cycle. Some advocates argue for greater accountability on the part of companies for content published on their platforms, while others believe that hiding any user generated material is censorship. Here to discuss one of the more opaque forms of content moderation are Gabe Nicholas, Research Fellow at CDT and author of Shedding Light on Shadowbanning, a recent report on the practice of covert content moderation, and Ana Valens, a journalist specializing in adult content and queer communities who has written about her own experience being shadowbanned by Twitter. More on our host, Jamal https://bit.ly/cdtjamal Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:44:31

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Tech Talk: Data Brokers — Talking Tech w/ Greg Nojeim & Dhanaraj Thakur

6/9/2022
We have another exciting show for you this week! CDT recently released a report, Legal Loopholes and Data for Dollars, exploring the data broker ecosystem, which is estimated to be worth about $200 billion dollars , and examining how law enforcement- and intelligence agencies have been evading legal requirements by purchasing data from brokers. Here to talk about this report and what can be done to prevent the illegal sale of sensitive information is Greg Nojeim Senior Counsel and Director of the CDT Security and Surveillance Project, and Dhanaraj Thakur, Research Director for CDT. More on our host, Jamal https://bit.ly/cdtjamal Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:28:53

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Tech Talk: The Markup — Talking Tech w/ Nabiha Syed

4/28/2022
Welcome to CDT’s Tech Talk, where we dish on tech and internet policy, while also explaining what these policies mean to our daily lives. I’m Jamal Magby, and it’s time to talk tech. We have another exciting show for you this week! Here to talk about The Markup and how they use investigative journalism to illustrate how powerful institutions are using technology to change our society is Nabiha Syed, CEO of The Markup and CDT Advisory Council member. More on our host, Jamal https://bit.ly/cdtjamal Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:28:49

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Tech Talk: K-12 Cybersecurity — Talking Tech w/ Doug Casey & Cody Venzke

4/12/2022
We have another exciting show for you this week! Here to talk about the importance of cybersecurity for K-12 schools is Doug Casey, Executive Director for the Connecticut Commission for Educational Technology and Cody Venzke, Senior Counsel for CDT’s Equity in Civic Technology Project. More on our host, Jamal https://bit.ly/cdtjamal Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:32:58

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Tech Talk- Sharing Student Data Across Public Sectors — W/ Marika Pfefferkorn & Elizabeth Laird

2/8/2022
We have another exciting show for you this week! Data-sharing practices between K-12 education agencies and adjacent public sectors, such as social services, are becoming increasingly prevalent. To minimize risk, agencies participating in data-sharing initiatives must take steps to ensure the benefits are available to all and that no group of students experiences disproportionate harm. CDT recently released a set of new recommendations for conducting community engagement around the use of student data, with particular focus on the practice’s role in decisions about data-sharing. The new report, Sharing Student Data Across Public Sectors: Importance of Community Engagement to Support Responsible and Equitable Use, presents the guidance alongside polling research on the demand for community engagement. Here to talk about the report is Marika Pfefferkorn, Co-founder & Solutions and Sustainability Officer for Twin Cities Innovation Alliance and Elizabeth Laird, Director of CDT’s Equity in Civic Technology project. More on our host, Jamal https://bit.ly/cdtjamal Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:36:18

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Tech Talk: The Patriot Act Turns 20 - Talking Tech W/ Laura Murphy & Fmr. U.S. Senator Russ Feingold

12/14/2021
We have another exciting show for you this week! Twenty years after the passage of the #PatriotAct, CDT took some time to dig deep and ask a few fundamental questions: What were the key civil liberty concerns back in the fall of 2001 and how has government surveillance activities changed over the last two decades? With the benefit of 20 years of experience, what authorities does the government need in order to keep the country safe while preserving civil liberties and civil rights in the U.S. and abroad? And lastly, Should there be a comprehensive reexamination of government #surveillance authorities today? What changes should be made? On October 5th, 2021 CDT hosted a discussion to tackle these and other questions. The event featured a fireside chat between former U.S. Senator Russ Feingold, the lone "no" vote in the Senate against the Patriot Act, and Laura Murphy, who managed the ACLU’s Legislative Office in Washington, D.C. during the bill’s passage. Full Event: https://cdt.org/event/the-patriot-act-turns-20-taking-stock-and-rethinking-surveillance-powers/ More on our host, Jamal https://bit.ly/cdtjamal Attribution: sounds used from Psykophobia, Taira Komori, BenKoning, Zabuhailo, bloomypetal, guitarguy1985, bmusic92, and offthesky of freesound.org.

Duration:00:21:41