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12 J. Bus. & Tech. L. 151 (2016-2017)
Social Media and Government Surveillance: The Case for Better Privacy Protections for Our Newest Public Space

handle is hein.journals/jobtela12 and id is 161 raw text is: 





JERAMIE  D. SCOTT*


Social Media and Government Surveillance: The
Case for Better Privacy Protections for Our Newest
Public Space






                             I. INTRODUCTION
Social media sites are public space and government mass surveillance of this public
space undermines  our  democracy.  As we spend  more  and  more  of our lives on
digital mediums, the government is monitoring publicly available social media data
more  than  ever.' At the same time, the Internet, particularly social media, has
become  an important public space to exercise First Amendment rights.
   Roughly  two-thirds of Americans use social media accounts.2 People use social
media  to share  ideas, explore new  ideas, and engage  those with  similar and
dissimilar ideas. Additionally, social media has  become   a key  tool of social
movements   like the Occupy Movement  and Black Lives Matter.3
   This Essay  will examine  the government's  use  of social media  monitoring
services to collect, monitor, and analyze social media data for the purposes  of
fighting crime and terrorism. After explaining the use of social media monitoring,' I
will examine the importance  of privacy in public.s Following, I will discuss the
dangers of this monitoring and  the lack of legal protection.' In conclusion, I will
offer the necessary actions that must be taken to protect our privacy and ultimately
our First Amendment  rights in an age of social media monitoring.


@ 2017 Jeranie D. Scott
   *   EPIC's National Security Counsel and Director of EPIC's Domestic Surveillance Project.
   1.  Map: Social Media Monitoring by Police Departments, Cities, and Counties, BRENNAN CENTER FOR
JUSTICE (Nov. 16, 2016) [hereinafter Brennan Center Map], https://www.brennancenter.org/analysis/map-
social-media-monitoring-police-departments-cities-and-counties.
   2.  Shea Bennett, 67% of Americans Use Social Media (With One in Six Active on Twitter), AD WEEK:
SocIAL TIMES (Apr. 2,2014), http://www.adweek.com/socialtimes/social-media-america/497615.
   3.  See, e.g., Bijan Stephen, Social Media Helps Black Lives Matter Fight the Power, WIRED MAG. (Nov.
2015), https://www.wired.com/2015/10/how-black-lives-matter-uses-social-media-to-fight-the-power.
   4.  See infra Part II.
   5.  See infra Part III.
   6.  See infra Parts IV-V.
   7.  See infra Part VI.


JOURNAL   OF BUSINESS  & TECHNOLOGY LAW


151

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