Technology, Thoughts, and Trinkets began as an experimentation; what was it like, as a scholar and civil rights advocate, to make draft thoughts, positions, and ideas public? Since its inception, the site has developed from philosophical musings to directly engaging with critical technical, privacy, and security issues, as well as occasionally reviewing interesting or important books and texts. My experiment has, thus far, turned out incredibly well: I’ve gained considerably more insight into the issues I study than had I kept my thoughts constrained to just the academy. Ultimately the site’s mission continues apace: to maintain a public digital image, while simultaneously creating a hub for my ongoing public projects.
Any ideas or thoughts that I write here should be attributed to me (save for comments made by other participants in this space), and do not necessarily represent the groups I work with or organizations that employ me. No one has compelled me to write any of the text that appears on this site. No sponsors have paid me to write about any of their products.
I’m a Research Associate at the Citizen Lab in the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto and a Privacy by Design Ambassador. My research interests focus on how privacy (particularly informational privacy, expressive privacy and accessibility privacy) is affected by digitally mediated surveillance and the normative implications that such surveillance has in (and on) contemporary Western political systems. I’m currently attending to a particular set of technologies that facilitate digitally mediated surveillance, including Deep Packet Inspection (DPI), behavioral advertising, and mobile device security. I try to think through how these technologies influence citizens in their decisions to openly express themselves or to engage in self-censoring behavior on a regular basis.
Somewhat more broadly, my academic and personal interests entwine with philosophical and political projects that attend to privacy, citizenship, technology, surveillance, globalization, copyright, and cosmopolitanism. In digitizing some of my investigations, ruminations, and critiques about these (and miscellaneous other) topics, I am ‘learning by doing’. This follows from my position that academics should contribute to the public sphere. Publicly exhibiting (and welcoming comment on) my thoughts in this digital space is a practical instantiation of that belief.
I’m always interested in new challenges and potential employment opportunities; feel free to look at LinkedIn profile as well as my academic CV, and contact me if you think I can contribute to your projects as an employee, a consultant, or an adviser.