October 17, 2011

When was the last time you played Oregon Trail on an Apple II?

Senators Wyden (D-Ore.) & Kirk (R- Ill.) to Join Retro Tech Fair and Hold Press Conference On Need to Update Digital Surveillance Law

***Live Webcast Available***

Washington, D.C. – The main federal law setting standards for government surveillance of digital technologies was written when Top Gun was a box office blockbuster and everyone wanted to “Walk like an Egyptian.”  The law was the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) and it hasn't been updated since 1986.  In recognition of the law’s 25th anniversary and the need for digital surveillance reform, U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) will join the Center for Democracy & Technology and a diverse cross section of interest groups to hold a press conference and "Retro Tech Fair" to showcase the technology of 1986 and the need to update laws to keep pace with today's technology.

What: Senators Call for Privacy Law Update & Retro Tech Fair
Where: Capitol Visitors Center, SVC 209
When: Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Room opens at 10am EDT for tech fair viewing
Press conference will begin at 11 am EDT

Speakers include:
·        U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.)
·         U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-Ill.)
·        Jim Dempsey, Vice President for Public Policy, Center for Democracy & Technology (Moderator)
·        Fred L. Smith, Jr., President and Founder, Competitive Enterprise Institute
·        Laura W. Murphy, Director, ACLU Washington Legislative Office

Retro Tech Fair
The various "high tech" devices on display from and around the 1986 digital era will spotlight just how far technology has advanced since ECPA was originally passed.  Devices from "brick" cell phones to full size working versions of top computer models of that era will be present for inspection.

Groups co-sponsoring the media conference include:

·        ACLU
·        Americans for Tax Reform
·        Competitive Enterprise Institute
·        Center for Democracy & Technology
·        The Constitution Project
·        Electronic Frontier Foundation
·        TechFreedom