On the one hand, I certainly DO think we should have a right to scrub things off the internet that are relics of our personal past - like, the social media profile I set up at 16 and can't access anymore. I don't think, however, we should have the right to scrub things that are a matter of public record - newspaper articles, for example. Now, I have no idea how you draw the line (is Wikipedia an encyclopedia that shouldn't be touched or a forum where gossip can be spread?), but there needs to BE a line without a doubt. And in my opinion Wikipedia falls on the wrong side of it and shouldn't be taken off of search results.
It's interesting that you bring up news articles, because it evokes the debate about media shield laws and who constitutes a journalist. A lot of media critics would say that blogging is journalism — so is a YouTube video that documents human rights abuses or other violence. I wonder if those should be considered part of the "public record" even though they've been posted by unofficial channels. Just draws more attention to the role of search engines and tech companies as the arbiters of what we know and can see online.
There's some talk amongst privacy advocates in favor of degrading information, that is, baking into our platforms the idea that a 15-year-old tweet (and there will be a day when we have 15-year-old tweets) should be harder to find than ones from six months ago.
What do you think about the work to build a nationwide public safety broadband network? Will the allocated$7B be enough to cover the US? How will commercial vendors react to losing customers to the government?
It's a huge undertaking. Officials I've spoken to don't foresee funding to be a problem; for instance, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has told Congress that he expects FirstNet to be substantially funded even before the agency gets around to holding its massive auction of TV spectrum next year (proceeds of which are meant to help pay for FirstNet).
The real trick will be working out how to share the network so that first-responders will have priority access to it when needed, but that others will be able to take advantage of the network (and therefore maximize its potential) when there's no emergency. The technology to do this exists, but coordination across different vendors, agencies and the public will be a challenge.
Personally, I think that FirstNet is a waste of money. Remember listening to all those "This is a test" radio announcements of the "Emergency Broadcast Network"? Did you hear anything except a test from that network EVER, including on 9/11? No, you didn't. Same fate of wasted billions awaits FirstNet.
I'm happy that the merger didn't go through because I think Sprint would have brought its poor customer service and higher prices to TMobile. I've been a Tmobile user for years and it works wonderfully around DC. The only problem I have is the dreadful signal along I95 in South Carolina. I do wonder how they are going to get to profitability, and worry about what will happen if they run out of money.
That seems to be the worry among investors, too. How long can T-Mobile extend its campaign against the cellular orthodoxy?