Michael McKibben & Allen Stern Publish White Paper On Privacy, Security and Leader v. Facebook with Forward By Historian Hy Berman
BY DONNA KLINE | August 7, 2012 | PITTSBURGH BUSINESS REPORT (PBR)
The uproar over up to 100 million fake accounts and Facebook web bots creating false advertising data is appalling. One wonders if anyone with a moral backbone has a handle on what is going on and how we can do better than the current Darwinian survival tactics spewing out of Silicon Valley. Keep reading (the answer is YES there is a better way.)
To most of us, the subject of digital security and privacy is a blur. On the one hand we know clinical healthcare information seems to be guarded, but on the other hand we have the likes of Facebook selling our data to the highest bidders.
Authors Michael McKibben, Allen Stern and History Professor Hy Berman have just released for the first time on this blog a must read paper on digital privacy. (Thank you gentlemen for the honor and vote of confidence.) Author Michael McKibben is the inventor the social networking technology which Facebook has stolen and uses to create its revenue. Allen Stern is a former IBMer and director of the national repositories of games and simulations and tests and evaluations in economics at The University of Minnesota. Hy Berman is professor emeritus of history from The University of Minnesota, was former political adviser to Vice President Hubert Humphrey and a friend of former Vice President Walter Mondale. They have teamed up to present a compelling picture for how to “raise the bar” on the subject of privacy and security in our digital age.
Message: Digital Privacy Doesn’t Have To Be An Either/Or Proposition
What the authors don’t say is that we have to sacrifice our privacy rights to be “social.” They say there’s a middle ground that balances openness and privacy. They also provide a sobering look at the decline of respect for intellectual property. They call on the tech world to grow up morally.
Especially troubling is their analysis of the influence certain Russians are having on Silicon Valley. The authors know this subject. Professor Berman is one of the country’s leading experts on 20th century U.S. history and Communism, and has become a revered, celebrated American historian. He has been a close adviser to Vice President Humphrey and Minnesota Governor Perpich, and is a personal friend of Vice President Mondale. Michael McKibben, a civil engineer and musician by education, before inventing what we now know as social networking technology, Mike engaged the Soviet culture rather dramatically in the ‘70’s and 80’s through Gospel music; even arranging music for the 1980 Moscow Summer Olympics and working with the famous Russian composer Aleksandra Pahkmutova. Allen Stern’s family emigrated from Germany before and during World War II, but some of his relatives were not so fortunate; they were murdered in Auschwitz by the Nazis. Al has dedicated his life to moral advocacy in their memories.
The authors say that social engagement is more than titillation and that personal privacy, far from being an option, is a hallmark of democracy. They say that the notion that a person can manage his privacy with the current fare of social networking is a dangerous assumption.
This paper is a must read, so much so that Professor Berman’s forward says “Read this paper carefully for it is a cautionary tale.”
Here’s the paper’s first release for which this blog was given the exclusive.
Click bottom right corner box to ENLARGE / REDUCE document view
Fig. 1 – In Bytes We Trust? Why Digital Security and Privacy Matter by Michael T. McKibben and Allen Stern with Forward by History Professor Hy Berman, Aug. 7, 2012. Now also available from doctoc and direct PDF download at Leader.com.