The Instigator
mobkillertman
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
Jayredthegreat
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points

should it be legal for the government and other entities to track our cell phones

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/4/2012 Category: Society
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,221 times Debate No: 25994
Debate Rounds (3)
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mobkillertman

Con

Definitions:
Monitor: To observe and check progress of quality over a period of time.

Contention 1:
As many of you probably know, the government can monitor our activities through various means including any device with a microphone or camera. For example, on Black Friday two United States malls used Footpath tracking technology to monitor shoppers in the mall. The Footpath system uses an assortment of discreet monitoring devices in order to observe the customers of the center. These devices calculate the movement of shoppers without needing to put any sort of device on or with them.
Contention 2:
You"re probably wondering why this is bad. Well, I believe that this is a violation of our privacy rights, and if they can do it, then what stops this technology from getting into the wrong hands? The technology used by the government and mall owners, as I stated earlier, uses cell phones to track people. This is bad because 9 out of 10 Americans use or have cell phones, which means that 90% of us can be tracked while our phones are on.
Contention 3:
Malls do give us the option to avoid being tracked, but it requires you to turn off your cell phone. In many cases, we might need to use our cell phones during any time in the mall. Should we really have to sacrifice using our phones in public places to protect our privacy?

Note: We are beginning debaters so please give us any advice or constructive criticism about our debating skills.

Sources :
http://endoftheamericandream.com...

http://www.pathintelligence.com...

http://www.google.com... percentage of americans have cell phones
Jayredthegreat

Pro

There are many ways to view this. If your asking if it is legal then your question has already been answered. Since they are government they will have to get approval for what the desire to do. This below can answer what you may want.

Cell Phone Privacy Rights v. Freedom of the Press

The Bartnicki v. Vopper case before the U.S. Supreme Court raises some serious questions about where to draw the line between personal privacy and freedom of the press. The Court heard oral arguments in December, and is now faced with the task of sorting out privacy issues surrounding third-party taping of private cellular phone conversations and the right of the press to disseminate information of public interest.

In 1993, Gloria Bartnicki, a teachers' union official in Pennsylvania, was having a conversation on her cellular phone with a fellow union official discussing pending contract negotiations. An unknown third-party taped the conversation and provided a copy to a group opposed to the teacher's demands. The group, in turn, provided a copy to a host at a local radio station who played the tape on the air. Bartnicki and the other union official sued the host of the radio program, the radio station and the individual who intercepted the call.

The 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the federal and state wiretapping statutes were unconstitutional. Now, the Supreme Court is weighing whether personal privacy and the right to communicate freely and confidentially via wireless phones is greater than the right of the press to broadcast or print private conversations that are of public concern.

In this case the conversation in question was obtained illegally by a third party which raises additional questions. For example, the Court must decide if the radio station and host can be held liable for broadcasting a private conversation that they had nothing to do with intercepting and that was provided to them by a third party.

Journalists argue that they have a First Amendment right to publish information of public significance. They also maintain that increased scrutiny into their sources could stymie their efforts to report stories in a balanced and expeditious manner.

On the other hand, privacy rights advocates assert that the right to privacy and the ability to have confidential phone conversations without the fear of being recorded by an unknown third-party is paramount.
Debate Round No. 1
mobkillertman

Con

First off, the government does not need any sort of permission to begin monitoring someone through their cell phone. It was believed that the government required a warrant in order to begin any sort of monitoring, but that is simply not the case. The government has already, on several occasions, broken privacy laws without any sort of legal permission.
Second, you brought up the event involving a Teachers" Union official whose phone call was tapped into. This is still a violation of privacy, and if this third party can tap into that call for a noble reason, there must be many people who would do it for slander.
Finally, this third party that obtained said conversation preformed the act illegally. However, the government can still do it without any legal consequence.
Contention 1:
Because the government monitors our cell phones and other devices constantly, this requires more government employees as the population grows, and because this is a government entity, it requires MORE tax payer money. Our economy cannot handle more spending at this time.
Contention 2:
Because we are so completely observed by the government, this means more government control. This can lead to more of a communist ideal than our democratic system. This threatens the freedom of all Americans and infringes upon our rights. I believe that most Americans would agree that the government does not need to step into our lives any further than they already have.
Jayredthegreat

Pro

Jayredthegreat forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
mobkillertman

Con

mobkillertman forfeited this round.
Jayredthegreat

Pro

Jayredthegreat forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
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