You are (constantly) leaving digital breadcrumbs… Every time you download an app, tweet, open your phone and turn it on, the geo positions and GPS is connecting you.
Today, technology is accessible everywhere, which doesn’t come without new challenges, he said. “Everything you do in private is eventually going to be public. And that’s a tough way to live,” he said. “But that is the world you’re entering into. The world of big data. Not just government.”
We are leaving trails of what we do, whom we are with, pictures of where we are and much more, every moment of everyday. You post a picture of comment on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and it is there forever. “You are leaving digital breadcrumbs as we speak,” he said. “Every time you download an app, tweet, open your phone and turn it on, the geo positions and GPS is connecting you.”
According to Newsom, the idea that you can hold information permanently in secret is not realistic in the digital age. “Your entire life has been recorded in ways that few of us have even begun to understand,” he said, explaining that the whole issue of privacy is an issue of transparency. “And Government is not caught up to providing a regulatory framework to allow and require that kind of transparency and this is a big, big issue,” he said. “It is a tough balancing act.”
In other words, anything we do can be found on the Internet or is being monitored. We are being watched by our government, yet we are not involved in our government. So Newsom said he is on a mission to create a digitalize democracy, where people actually participate in the government and it’s decisions. “Governing is not about being something, it’s doing something,” he said.
His book “Citizenville” is an attempt to educate and inspire citizens to regain their empathy to be involved in the world around them. While several books in the past have discussed technology in government, he said, “It’s always about being elected and never about governing. The “Citizenville” challenge is about governing.”