Data privacy: Why should we care?

News that the U.S government has been quietly collecting data from telephone and internet services has upset many of our neighbours to the south.

But the story’s been raising privacy concerns up here, too.

Many Canadians want to know about this country’s surveillance techniques and what kind of information Ottawa might be collecting as we make calls, answer emails, or sign into websites.

This week on CBC Live Online, we explored privacy and data surveillance — and I made my on-camera debut to fill in for regular host Lauren O’Neil.

Our panel included:

  • Daphne Guerrero, the manager of public outreach and education for the Officer of the Privacy Commissioner.
  • Tamir Israel, staff lawyer with the Samuelson-Glushko Canadian Internet Policy & Public Interest Clinic at the University of Ottawa.
  • Alfred Hermida, an online news pioneer and associate professor at the UBC Graduate School of Journalism.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE CHAT

Screen Shot 2013-06-14 at 12.10.12 AM

Vintage interviews with youthful Gen X sound awfully familiar

Faces of Gen X

The faces of Gen X (CBC Archives)

While perusing the CBC archives recently, I came across some nifty items about my generation’s older siblings: the supposedly cynical members of Gen X.

Here’s how the archive keepers describe them:

Young people born from the early 1960s to late 1970s believed that the future was theirs. As baby boomers aged, employment and prosperity would be passed along.

Instead, “Generation Xers” complained that they were propelled into a changing, recession-driven workplace that offered little but “McJobs.”

They became the first post-war generation to be worse off than their parents, left with reduced expectations and downsized hope for the future.

Like today’s young adults, Gen Xers were variously described as overeducated, underemployed, and struggling to compete with the generation that came of age during the glory days of flower power.

Archival footage of anxious Gen Xers is oddly relatable, as young people growing up today face many of the same challenges and uncertainties.

Check out some of the great archival material we have on this like-us-but-not-quite generation.

Funky hairstyles aside, we seem to have a lot in common with those that grew up watching Beverly Hills 90210, making mix tapes and driving their parents insane with a well-timed ‘whatever.’

NOTE: A version of this write up was published in Generation Why, a weekly multimedia magazine that I co-edit with Lauren O’Neil.

Gen Why: issue 1

Gen Why: issue 1

The project is a collaboration between Canadians under the age of 30 and young CBC staffers.

The point is to surface the best of CBC News and current affairs programming in a conversational way, and from a youth perspective.

Please check out the first two issues, released on March 1 and March 8, and send feedback and ideas our way.

We publish every Friday, and if you’re a young Canadian interested in contributing or illustrating the next cover, let us know!

The magic of Mars on social media

Hello friends, sorry I’ve been rather silent lately. The summer is a busy time for young writers at CBCNews.ca. It seems all the folks with families make sure they get their summer vacations, and we newbies get to chill our coffee and warm their seats.

To tell you the truth, I was a bit bleary-eyed at work today. You see, I stayed up late last night doing this.

Luckily, my fascination with all things martian ended up helping me at work, where I rounded up some stellar social media content about the highly anticipated Mars landing — which I’d like to share here, as well.

These two aren’t my most popular Storify curations of all time (this one about the Higgs boson particle, in Comic Sans font, probably is) but I’m so enamored with my latest geeky topic that I want to post about it as many times as I can get away with in one day.

Hope you enjoy, fellow space cadets! Click on either preview to read the full story: