Feb 062012

Welcome new readers, whom I’ve now announced this blog to.  It seems to be chugging along nicely, although like any new project it is still subject to modifications and tweaks.  But the core of it won’t change: this blog, a piece of a larger envisioned project, is dedicated to covering the intersection of criminal law and technology, noting and commenting on situations where state sanctions are applying to technology use and development.

By design it will cover a broad range of examples, although by necessity it will end up somewhat narrowed as there simply isn’t enough of me to go around to note every instance where criminal law and cyberlaw converge.  Which is fine: there are other sites that ably handle specific issues so there’s less of a need for me to capture them here.  I also find myself generally more interested in capturing the issues that may have escaped notice anyway (although there are certain topics with such impact that they will need to be covered here even if everyone else in the world does as well).  A running thread throughout this blog is the desire to understand the sociological reflex behind determining what is right and wrong.  That reflex is evident in all sorts of issues, and it would be hard to develop insight into it if this blog only focused on a few big ones.

Although being, as I am, an American lawyer, this site will tend to skew towards American issues, but I’m purposefully not limiting it to American legal issues alone.  Not only have both my legal and technology backgrounds included experiences abroad, engendering a particular interest in the international aspects of technology regulation, but especially when it comes to Internet technology it is simply not possible to have any meaningful discussion about state sanctions applying to technology use and development without considering how they apply to this unprecedentedly global medium.  At minimum we need to ask, who gets to apply them, and what cultural values do they reflect?  And what happens when they conflict?

Finally, as a bit of background for those who do not already know me, I’m a cyberlawyer in the San Francisco Bay Area.  Prior to becoming a lawyer I had a career developing and managing websites both in Silicon Valley and France.  And before that I was a sociology and mass communications double major at UC Berkeley where I discovered and became enthralled with information technology and understanding how people came to use it.  That education continues to inform me and will surely be regularly reflected here.

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