Tech in a post-Roe future- POLITICO

Tech in a post-Roe future- POLITICO

The Supreme Court docket choice to overturn Roe v. Wade has clearly far-reaching coverage implications, not least with regards to each present and future expertise.

POLITICO’s Ben Leonard has a report out right this moment on implications of the choice for digital abortion care, the place suppliers usually prescribe abortion capsules by way of telehealth visits. That kind of care was already banned in 19 states earlier than right this moment’s choice, and now these searching for abortion in pink states must cope with governments that privateness and abortion activists worry would possibly hunt down knowledge with which to prosecute each abortion-seekers and suppliers.

“The simplest folks to implement it in opposition to could be sufferers doing these searches on their telephones or laptops,” Mary Ziegler, a professor on the Florida State College School of Legislation and an professional on the authorized battle over abortion, informed Ben. “States in the meanwhile … are saying they’re not going to punish sufferers, however they’ll discover it could be simpler to punish sufferers and subsequently would possibly in the end resolve to alter their minds on that topic.”

Ben and Ruth Reader informed us final month how telehealth suppliers have been making ready. And in a report final week, POLITICO’s Sam Sabin described how abortion rights teams have been already ramping up their digital privateness protections and cybersecurity defenses forward of Roe’s overturning.

As Sam wrote in DFD, digital surveillance eventualities like police inserting facial recognition cameras exterior abortion clinics and harvesting knowledge from well being apps are very actual worries. (She additionally answered questions from readers final month on knowledge privateness and digital surveillance round abortion.)

Informational providers like Repro Authorized Helpline have applied secured messaging via providers like Tor, Sign, and ProtonMail, as consultants warn that current regulation enforcement practices for combing via seized gadgets may yield mountains of incriminating knowledge in states the place abortion is now unlawful.

Eva Galperin, director of cybersecurity on the Digital Frontier Basis, informed Sam that “The most definitely state of affairs proper now could be that an individual will get reported by a relative or ER nurse, after which if they’re in a state like Texas, the state merely reveals up and searches their cellphone.”

That signifies that some abortion rights activists try to go even additional in shielding sufferers’ knowledge privateness — together with turning to the blockchain. That may not seem to be a promising strategy, contemplating the numerous high-profile current examples of authorities tracing so-called untraceable transactions, however some activists consider the tech may serve one other perform: organizing grassroots fundraising campaigns, by way of an “abortion DAO” (or decentralized autonomous group).

When the draft opinion of the choice overturning Roe was leaked final month, the New York Instances interviewed crypto-enthusiastic abortion activists who speculated that members of such a DAO may quickly pool funds that they’d then set up to distribute to abortion-seekers with restricted entry to care, citing examples reminiscent of ConstitutionDAO and UkraineDAO that served related features.

Molly Dickson and Madison Web page, two artists in Texas who launched a line of NFTs aimed toward elevating funds for abortion within the wake of the draft opinion, have been simple in regards to the expertise’s attention-getting efficacy in an interview with Reuters, declaring how the hype across the expertise is perhaps used as a leverage level for activism.

“A lot cash is pouring into crypto,” they mentioned. “We get much more consideration.”

Mark Zuckerberg was very busy this week. In a sequence of Fb posts, the Meta honcho introduced a batch of latest insurance policies with implications for his firm’s model of the metaverse: Making subscriptions from different providers “interoperable” with Fb, introducing NFTs to Fb, and in a separate announcement turning the Fb Pay service into Meta Pay, a “digital pockets for the metaverse.”

Most of the firm’s current developments name again to high-profile stumbles from its previous — the digital pockets to the corporate’s ill-fated cryptocurrency experiment; its limitless tinkering with varied VR headsets an try to proper its long-ago cellular debacle.

Meta has made broad gestures towards a cooperative, collaborative strategy to constructing the metaverse, however its dimension offers it an immense quantity of energy to set its personal guidelines, no matter what regulators would possibly need (or different firms, for that matter). Whereas developments like this week’s founding of a Metaverse Requirements Discussion board level in that collaborative course, the corporate’s flurry of exercise makes it clear who’s within the driver’s seat.

The firing of the Google worker who claimed its AI was “sentient” impressed a new spherical of public hand-wringing, with most critical AI researchers discounting his declare.

In his considerate, accessible guide “Actuality+: Digital Worlds and the Issues of Philosophy,” printed earlier this 12 months, the Australian thinker David J. Chalmers tackles that very query in a chapter titled “Do simulated lives matter?” Chalmers begins by citing the 2021 movie “Free Man” the place AI-powered characters in a simulation go on strike, asking “Is it morally permissible to ‘play God’ by creating digital worlds containing aware sims? What ethical obligations do we’ve got towards the sims in these worlds?”

With out recounting Chalmers’ complete argument, he finally ends up extending Immanuel Kant’s Precept of Humanity to simulated beings, writing that “we should always by no means deal with sims merely as means to an finish however as ends in themselves.” Meals for thought in case your mind drifts in a sadistic course whereas losing time taking part in “The Sims”.

Keep in contact with the entire staff: Ben Schreckinger ([email protected]); Derek Robertson ([email protected]); Konstantin Kakaes ([email protected]);  and Heidi Vogt ([email protected]). Observe us on Twitter @DigitalFuture.

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