Digital Rights and Freedoms: A Framework for Surveying Users and Analyzing Policies
Luca Maria Aiello and Daniel McFarland (Editors), Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Social Informatics, SocInfo 2014 (Barcelona, November 10-13) , Springer LNCS Series, 2014
16 Pages Posted: 10 Oct 2014 Last revised: 11 Oct 2014
Date Written: October 3, 2014
Interest has been revived in the creation of a "bill of rights" for Internet users. This paper analyzes users' rights into ten broad principles, as a basis for assessing what users regard as important and for comparing different multi-issue Internet policy proposals. Stability of the principles is demonstrated in an experimental survey, which also shows that freedoms of users to participate in the design and coding of platforms appear to be viewed as inessential relative to other rights. An analysis of users' rights frameworks that have emerged over the past twenty years similarly shows that such proposals tend to leave out freedoms related to software platforms, as opposed to user data or public networks. Evaluating policy frameworks in a comparative analysis based on prior principles may help people to see what is missing and what is important as the future of the Internet continues to be debated.
Keywords: digital rights, privacy, data portability, free software, open source, participatory design, user self-governance, freedom of information, net neutrality, user attitudes
JEL Classification: O34, O35, O38, Z13, Z19
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation