Jane Bambauer on whether data is speech

Jane Bambauer

July 23, 2013 · 1 comment

Jane Yakowitz Bambauer, associate professor of law at the University of Arizona, discusses her forthcoming paper in the Stanford Law Review titled Is Data Speech? How do we define “data” and can it be protected in the same way as free speech? She examines current privacy laws and regulations as they pertain to data creation and collection, including whether collecting data should be protected under the First Amendment.



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  • Dr. D. Y.

    Very interesting and wonderful to hear your voice too. It is somewhat troubling to think or wonder that if data is considered speech, can it be repeated without permission in the way spoken speech can be freely quoted? At least publicly spoken speech. So is certain data like some spoken speech, for example between you and your doctor, protected from most dissemination? So there is private and public speech, both protected, one from dissemination and the other from suppression. I imagine there is data that would be treated the same way.

    About the example, the photographs and voice make the person identifiable while the written record without names could remain anonymous. A recording out of focus or face blanked out, voice manipulated might make it less identifiable and therefore allowed perhaps. It seems clear the decision to me.

    Second chances, information that is wrong should be corrected and even sourced.