Originally published: January 25, 2012
Last updated: January 25, 2012 - 3:53pm
When discussing constitutional law, it's become a cliché to mention how the founding fathers didn't have newfangled modern technologies. GPS systems, computers, atomic bombs... none of those existed in the era of Franklin, Washington, and Madison. Like many ideas, this is a cliché because it's true.
In a ruling earlier this week (United States vs. Jones), the Supreme Court decided that attaching GPS trackers to vehicles without warrants violates the Fourth Amendment. The Court decided in a majority opinion that the use of GPS trackers without a warrant impinges on our right to be free of unreasonable searches... but, here's the kicker: a minority of justices, headed by Samuel Alito, argued that long-term GPS tracking--with or without a warrant--violates privacy expectations. In other words, every justice on the Supreme Court has reservations about using GPS tracking as a law enforcement tool. As the disruptive technology boom of the past twenty years matures, the Supreme Court will be seeing many more cases like this. GPS systems, smartphones, unmanned aerial vehicles, cyberattacks, online commerce, and digital copyright law are all on the cutting edge of law--and how the Supreme Court (and others) interpret them will set the stage for decades to come.
- Subsidizing the Digital Television Transition
- Which Election 2010 race has run the most TV ads? Not the one you'd expect
- Franklin heads to privacy, civil liberties board
- Watching Big Brother: Privacy Board Delayed
- Speech Is Important, But Not Everything Important Is Speech: A Close Look At the Cable Industry's Fight With the FCC
- CTIA official leaves to head up venture capital group
- Study: Young people concerned about privacy
- Supreme Court to Decide Case Involving 'Right of Informational Privacy'
- Comcast and NBC Universal: Who Benefits? (updated w/witness list)
- Once again, out of bounds at ESPN
- Privacy advocates satisfied with Lieberman’s cybersecurity rewrite
- It's A Whole New Political Ad Ballgame
- Cyberwar, Syrian Style
- Finding Untainted Jurors in the Age of the Internet
- Court Rules That Yelp Must Unmask the Identities of Seven Anonymous Reviewers