Computers, Freedom and Privacy > CFP 2005
The 15th annual ACM Conference on Computers, Freedom, and Privacy will be held at the Westin Hotel in Seattle, WA, April 12-15, 2005. A detailed program is available at

Discounted registration, and special conference rates at the Seattle Westin remain available through March 30, register before that date in order to get the advance discounts.

This year's theme is Panopticon: Over time, and particularly recently, surveillance of ordinary citizens has increased to dramatic levels. Not only are governments watching more aspects of their citizens' lives, but those in the private sector are increasing surveillance of people as well. Often lost in the race to "increase intelligence" are discussions about different approaches to address problems like the threat of terrorism that are equally
or more effective, but do not involve extensive and constant surveillance.

The opening plenary debate focuses on "Sousveillance in the Panopticon", moderated by Dr. Anita Ramasastry, Director of the Shidler Center for Law, Commerce, and Technology at the University of Washington School of Law. Panel members include Dr. Steve Mann, Director of the eyeTap Personal Imaging Lab at the University of Toronto, known for his work in wearable cameras and computing; Dr. Latanya Sweeney, Director of the Data Privacy Lab at Carnegie Mellon University; and David Brin, author of The Transparent Society.

Some of the other sessions closely related to the Panopticon theme include Terrorizing Privacy? European Developments and Counter Strategies; Intelligent Video Surveillance; Observing Hidden Surveillance Structures; and Art, Surveillance and Public Places.

Some of the other important topics include the role of blogging and other nascent communications technology in promoting free speech, explored in the session Unstoppable Speech (or, The Revolution Will Be Podcast); a discussion of Economics of Privacy: Market or Regulation; and The Accountable Internet: Establishing Trust While Preserving Values. In addition to the plenary and breakout sessions, evening "Birds of Feather" cover a wide range of topics.

As is traditional at CFP, Tuesday is dedicated to longer sessions. A full-day Workshop on Vanishing Anonymity features over a dozen academic, NGO, and private sector experts discussing authentication techniques, customer, student, traveller and racial profiling, the implications of new technologies such as sousveillance cameras and wearable computing, RFIDs, biometrics, and internet protocols. Tutorials include Biometric Basics, Identity Theft in 2005, International Copyright Law (featuring participants from at least four continents), and Mike Godwin's legendary Constitutional Law in Cyberspace.

EFF's 14th Annual Pioneer Awards will take place on Wednesday, April 13th, 2005 at the Science Fiction Museum in Seattle. The event begins at 7pm, and buses will be available outside of the Westin, to transport CFP guests to and from the museum.

For those unable to attend in person, most sessions will be blogged, and presentation materials will be available on the web soon after the conference.

See you at CFP!