SXSW 2019

8-Bit Policies in a 4K World: Adapting Law to Tech


The speed at which technology is developing is unprecedented in our history, yet politicians are as jammed up and at loggerheads as ever. The Senate hearing with Mark Zuckerberg revealed how little our political leaders actually understand what's going on, but we're still bound by the decisions they make regarding the technology we use on a daily basis. SOPA, PIPA, and the FCC's vote against Net Neutrality are specific instances of politicians being at odds with public opinion, where technology enthusiasts feel the constant struggle to stem the tide of harmful legislation, and many may be left wondering - where is this going?

Join us as we discuss how to engage with our representatives and help them craft flexible policies that address the ever-changing tech landscape.

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  1. Does engagement with the process matter? Does my rep care if he hears from me? What does success or failure look like when trying to effect change?
  2. How can we best communicate with our representatives? What effect does a phone call have on your senator? A tweet? What works and what doesn't.
  3. What are our favorite strategies for crafting flexible, smart policies? What does a smart tech policy do? What things does it left unsaid?



Alex Shahrestani, Board Member, EFF Austin

Meta Information:

  • Event: SXSW
  • Format: Panel
  • Track: Intelligent Future
  • Track 2
  • Level: Intermediate

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