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Cafe Inquiry

Cafe Inquiry is our monthly casual get-together to meet people and discuss topics of science and humanism.

This month's discussion topic: What is the proper sphere of personal privacy, and should it still be respected? Should government and corporate surveillance of individuals be permitted, and if so how much?

What should government agencies like the NSA be able to surveil, and for what purposes? Most people would accept secrecy and surveillance in order to protect national security, but to what degree is that justification open to abuse?

Some people in the information technology sector claim that privacy is unrealistic in the computer age. Should technology trump the law, or be made to conform to it? Do people automatically give up their privacy when they use social media? If so, why? Is there a significant difference between government and commercial surveillance? Should Facebook be made into a public, or quasi-public, virtual space?

How should the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution be interpreted in our present circumstances, and what protections should it provide?


No outside food or drink allowed. Free and open to the public.

We are also planning to go out for food and/or drinks afterwards. Free and open to the public.

Interested in leading a discussion or have someone to recommend? Please contact us at dc[at]centerforinquiry.net.

The venue is wheelchair accessible. People with disabilities who anticipate needing accommodations or who have questions about physical access may email sdavis [at] centerforinquiry [dot] net in advance of the event.

 

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  • Andy B.

    Great conversation, good dinner!

    September 25, 2013

  • Rachael

    Is it easy to park around the building or would I be better off taking the metro?

    September 24, 2013

    • David A.

      In this "town" it is always better to use the Metro. No parking, no traffic, time to read, and you can walk around later.

      September 24, 2013

  • Jeff

    Rachael: It's not easy to park, but not impossible either. There is no parking on-site, so you have to work to find a spot on the street nearby.

    September 24, 2013

  • Jeff

    That's funny, since my bias is in favor of maximizing privacy. I think people should own their image, that websites should have to get permission before putting a cookie or other program on your computer, that the NSQA should be required to get a warrant before each and every act of surveillance, and many other restrictions on surveillance. I must have over-corrected when trying to write the questions in a neutral way! :)

    September 19, 2013

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