Contributions by ‘Jessica Silbey’

Four Privacy Stories and Two Hard Cases

Skinner-Thompson’s focus on privacy at the margins is to find a doctrinal path through what is essentially inhospitable legal precedent to a more robust form of privacy for marginalized people and communities. The book’s arguments are grounded largely in case analysis and doctrinal narrative; he aims to tell coherent stories about sets of cases which, if pursued by lawyers or judges, would lead to more just outcomes for litigants. And by “just” Skinner-Thompson explicitly means equal justice, that is, marginalized communities would no longer be the “have nots” in the famous description of the court system in which the “haves [always] come out ahead.” Notably, this is not a book about policy (which laws should be passed), although it does articulate the virtuous reasons for pursuing certain judicial outcomes, such as enhancing democracy and reducing the precarity of marginalized individuals’ lives. Instead, Privacy at the Margins provides doctrinal tools and road maps to reach those outcomes, which may be useful to both lawyers and legal decisionmakers when faced with the growing number and range of privacy complaints.

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