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3.3 Even if conventional content is separated from other forms of information which have meaning, the expansion of opportunities for authorities to draw inferences about citizens’ intentions or behavior from patterns emerging from electronic traces of their activities is growing exponentially with increases in the volume of the data that citizens generate through their active and passive (e.g. mobile phones being carried from one place to another) use of digital technologies and networks.
3.4 There is no detail in the draft Bill as to what technical algorithms will be used to extract meaning from communications data or what standard of reliability is acceptable. Legislation should set a standard as an acceptable target for performance subject to review in the same way that standards are set for other public services. There need to be agreed target benchmarks against which the proportion of errors can be judged.

Robin Mansell’s evidence on the Draft Communications Data Bill (pdf)

The legal prosecution of Twitter users in the U.K. raises questions about the line between protecting free speech and limiting hate speech or libelous comments.Here in Canada, as the law currently stands, a person can only be prosecuted for something they’ve posted on social media if that posting is criminally libelous or incites hatred. If we wanted to amend legislation surrounding free speech, it would not happen quickly or easily, and could also involve invoking a notwithstanding clause to override the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. What’s your take?What are your thoughts on the U.K.’s laws about offensive communications? Should Canada consider altering our free speech law? Does our current system provide too high a barrier to changing laws?

The legal prosecution of Twitter users in the U.K. raises questions about the line between protecting free speech and limiting hate speech or libelous comments.Here in Canada, as the law currently stands, a person can only be prosecuted for something they’ve posted on social media if that posting is criminally libelous or incites hatred. If we wanted to amend legislation surrounding free speech, it would not happen quickly or easily, and could also involve invoking a notwithstanding clause to override the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. What’s your take?What are your thoughts on the U.K.’s laws about offensive communications? Should Canada consider altering our free speech law? Does our current system provide too high a barrier to changing laws?