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MOST RECENT PRINT ISSUE


Symposium on Elections in the Era of Technological Threats and Opportunities

The Danger of Democracy’s Self Doubt

by Prof. Edward Foley, The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law

"If democracy fails this year, it will be despite the efforts, ideas, and alarms these essays offer with great force and urgency. And if democracy succeeds despite all the attacks upon it, it may be in part because these essays play a role in protecting the process of self-government from those who endeavor to undermine it. That would be no small thing."

Symposium on Elections in the Era of Technological Threats and Opportunities

Strike & Share: Combating Foreign Influence Campaigns On Social Media

by Ellen Weintraub, Commissioner of the Federal Election Commission & Carlos A. Valdivia, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Office for the District of Columbia

"Malign foreign influence operations represent a grave and ongoing threat to American democracy. It is tempting, where political speech and complicated technology is involved, to take a laissez-faire approach and hope that all ends well. The risk, however, is too great that Americans will end up with political debates that they cannot trust, elections that are robbed of their legitimacy, and policies that are covertly manipulated by foreign interference. Government policymakers in both the legislative and executive branches owe a duty to the American people to grapple with the technical and legal challenges that arise when foreign influence campaigns spread on social media. Failure to do so could mean surrendering to foreign efforts to exacerbate division and polarization and subvert both democracy and truth, straining our common bonds and sabotaging our efforts to come together to solve the serious problems we face."

Symposium on Elections in the Era of Technological Threats and Opportunities

The Virus and the Vote: How to Prevent the Infection of Our Election

by Prof. Nathaniel Persily, Stanford Law School

"We need to prepare for the worst and hope for the best. The lack of federal leadership and the partisan polarization that accompanies this shock make the transition particularly difficult. All who care about the validity of this election and the legitimacy of whoever emerges victorious need to join in the effort to create a healthy and safe 2020 Election."

Symposium on Elections in the Era of Technological Threats and Opportunities

Protecting the Perilous Path of Election Returns: From the Precinct to the News

by Dr. Stephen Pettigrew, University of Pennsylvania & Charles Stewart III, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

"But, even if we leave technological vulnerabilities aside, election returns by their nature are subject to manipulation when they are communicated to the public. In thinking about how to ride out the cybersecurity storm of 2020, it is important to consider both the technological and social aspects of how election returns are communicated to the public if the country is to protect against efforts to undermine the legitimacy of the election."

Symposium on Elections in the Era of Technological Threats and Opportunities

Facilitating Accountability for Online Political Advertisements

by Dr. Abby Wood, University of Southern California Gould School of Law

"With or without government requirements to do so, platforms should publicly disclose, and make available, both the targets (core audience) and audience who saw the ad due to shares and likes (final audience). Counter-speakers do not need individually identifying information, which is not available in the broadcast context, either. They just need access to the same audiences."

Symposium on Elections in the Era of Technological Threats and Opportunities

Democratic Tradeoffs: Platforms and Digital Political Advertising

by Dr. Daniel Kreiss, University of North Carolina & Bridget Barrett, University of North Carolina

"We must not lose sight of the democratic goods that these digital tools are capable of as we combat their intentional misuse. Solutions cannot only focus on stopping abuses of these systems; they must also promote democratic ends."