IANAL, but I found the Wisconsin Court of Appeals’ recent refusal to admit evidence of a tape recording of a school bus driver verbally and physically abusing a child on his bus interesting, and a bit puzzling.  The issue the court considered pertains to the recording, of course, not the abuse.  In Wisconsin it’s OK to record conversations to which one is party, but apparently it’s not OK to disclose those recordings, and that was the sticking point for the 2-1 majority.

Policy-wise, we have a long way to go toward a workable future of surveillance and recording technologies.  I’m conflicted on this one — it seems reasonable to be able to record things one is directly perceiving.  At the same time, it seems absurd to suggest that there is some ever-present bubble of confidentiality (i.e. that one would be limited in one’s own use of such recordings).  On the other hand, though, the notion of everyone recording and sharing everything always is troubling.

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