Nov. 26, 2019

Michele Gilman: What if There's Too Much Privacy?

'What if There's Too Much Privacy?' with Michele Gilman (Ep. 211) Policymakers often discuss privacy as something that is lacking. But what if there is too much privacy? Michele Gilman joined Joe Miller to explain.  Bio  Michele Gilman...

'What if There's Too Much Privacy?' with Michele Gilman (Ep. 211)

Policymakers often discuss privacy as something that is lacking. But what if there is too much privacy? Michele Gilman joined Joe Miller to explain. 


Michele Gilman (@profmgilman) is the Venable Professor of Law; Director, Saul Ewing Civil Advocacy Clinic; and Co-Director, Center on Applied Feminism at the University of Baltimore School of Law. She is also a faculty fellow at Data & Society in New York, where she focuses on the intersection of data privacy law with the concerns of low-income communities. 

Before joining the faculty, Professor Gilman was a trial attorney in the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice; an associate at Arnold and Porter in Washington, D.C.; a law clerk to United States District Court Judge Frank A. Kaufman of the District of Maryland; and an editor of the Michigan Law Review. Professor Gilman's scholarship focuses on issues relating to poverty, privacy, economic inequality, and feminist legal theory and her articles have been published in the California Law Review, the Vanderbilt Law Review and the Washington University Law Review, among others. She was a visiting associate professor at the William and Mary School of Law during the 2005-06 academic year and a professor in the University of Aberdeen summer program in summer 2009. In 2009, she received the Outstanding Teaching by a Full-Time Faculty Member Award. 

Professor Gilman directs the Saul Ewing Civil Advocacy Clinic, in which student attorneys represent individuals and community groups in a wide array of civil litigation and law reform projects. She is involved in numerous groups working on behalf of low-income Marylanders. She is a member of the Committee on Litigation and Legal Priorities of the ACLU of Maryland and the Judicial Selection Committee of the Women's Law Center. She is the past president of the board of the Public Justice Center, where she served from 2004-2014, as well as a past member of the Maryland Bar's Section Council on Delivery of Legal Services. She received the 2010 University System of Maryland Board of Regents' Award for Public Service. Professor Gilman is the former co-chair and a member of the Scholarship Committee of the AALS Clinical Legal Education Section, and a former editor of the Clinical Law Review Review and the Journal of Legal Education. She is also a co-director of the Center on Applied Feminism, which works to apply the insights of feminist legal theory to legal practice and policy. She is a member of the Maryland and District of Columbia bars. 

Professor Gilman will be a faculty fellow at Data & Society in New York during the 2019-2020 academic year.  She will be focusing on the intersection of data privacy law with the concerns of low-income communities. 


 University of Baltimore School of Law 

The Surveillance Gap: The Harms of Extreme Privacy and Data Marginalization by Michele Gilman (New York University Review of Law & Social Change, 2019). 

News Roundup 

Uber wins against woman in driver rape lawsuit 

Uber was victorious last week in a sexual assault lawsuit brought against it by a woman who says she was raped near a San Francisco shopping mall last year, by a suspended Uber driver who still had the Uber decal on his window. In her pleadings before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley, the victim claimed that the suspended driver was acting within the scope of his employment and that she legitimately thought it would be a safe ride. But the court disagreed.  Judge Corley did find, however, that the victim had made out a plausible claim for negligence and permitted her to refile for punitive damages for negligence stemming from Uber’s apparent failure to ensure the driver removed the decal from his window. The driver still faces a criminal trial which could send him away for life. 

Separately, Uber has begun videotaping rides. But the effort has faced resistance from privacy advocates. 

Prisoners in West Virginia prisons to be charged $.03 per minute to read e-books 

West Virginia prisoners will have to pay $.03 per minute to access e-books via Project Gutenberg, which otherwise offers the public free access to over 60,000 books. The West Virginia Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation (WVDCR) entered into a deal with Global Tel Link (GTL) to provide tablets to 10 prisons in West Virginia which will also allow inmates to watch videos and send written messages and photos. But the rates for those services, ranging between $.25 and $.50 per minute, are still very high relative to the $.04 per hour to $.58 per hour prisoners can earn in wages. The prisons will lift a current restriction on accessing books in print. But advocates who oppose the exploitative $.03 per minute fee for e-books note that the use of books in print comes with many more restrictions. 

DC AG sues DoorDash for wage theft 

DC Attorney General Karl Racine is suing DoorDash for pocketing tips the company solicits from customers. The Office of the Attorney General has been investigating the company since March, and now says that evidence shows that DoorDash routinely kept the tips to reduce the amount they had to pay drivers in wages. 

Congresswoman Val Demings introduces bipartisan digital evidence bill 

Florida Congresswoman Val Demings, a Democrat, has introduced new bipartisan legislation to improve law enforcement’s access to digital evidence from tech companies. The bill would create a new Office of Digital Law Enforcement within the Department of Justice to train law enforcement on how to handle digital evidence. It would also create a Center for Excellence for Digital Forensics to centralize tech expertise and legal assistance within the same building. The bill would also set up infrastructure for the DOJ to issue digital evidence program grants, as well as a Technology Policy Advisory Board to advise the Attorney General on digital evidence best practices. 

Brooklyn landlord nixes facial recognition plan 

A Brooklyn landlord has cancelled plans to install facial recognition technology after resistance from tenants and advocacy groups. Robert Nelson, President of Nelson Management Group, owns the 700-unit Atlantic Plaza Towers building in Brownsville where most tenants are black. Tenants and their supporters are now pushing for statewide legislation that would outlaw facial recognition technology throughout the Empire State. 

Democrats call out Oracle on Diversity 

Democratic lawmakers who are members of the House Tech Accountability Caucus, the Tri-Caucus, and the Congressional Black Caucus’ Diversity Task force called out Oracle for its lack of diversity in a letter to Oracle CEO Larry Ellison. The letter notes that Oracle has 0% board diversity, saying it is unacceptable given Oracle’s attempts to earn business from firms that serve people of color.