Thing? Not a Thing? Or Internet of Things?

internet of things word cloudOnce again GovLoop has its eyes on the intersection of government and the information revolution. This recent post raises important questions about the role of government oversight and regulation as the Internet of Things (IoT) explodes. As the author states:

Once we accept that the IoT is an inevitability—that consumer service providers will start to instrument the physical world with sensors—here is a compelling advantage to government charting this course along with them. Those institutions—private ones—don’t have robust public feedback mechanisms, and are not beholden to the popular will. Our governments are. When they push ahead into this new technological territory, it gives us all a chance to deliberate together around how [our] rights should be respected and regulated; a precedent hopefully for private sector actors.

We consider our governments, particularly those at the state and local level, to be our laboratories of democracy. The emergence of the Internet of Things, its opportunities and attendant challenges, may be an ideal moment for us all to run more tests —on how it could work, and how it should be regulated—to learn more together about how our democracy can and should work in the 21st century.

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