Meg Schwenzfeier is a senior Government major from Charlottesville, Virginia. She is interested in political campaigns, particularly the ways in which data and technology are changing (or not changing) the way campaigns function. At William & Mary, Meg is involved with the W&M Young Democrats as well as Virginia21, a non-partisan higher education advocacy organization.
Consumer Data Privacy in Politics
This article explores regulatory issues surrounding the use of online consumer data by political campaigns. A wealth of personal data is collected about internet users and is frequently used by marketing companies to target a variety of consumers. Political campaigns also use this data to target voters. The political use of personal data may strike some voters as "creepy" or an infringement of privacy, but the regulation of this data also raises important questions about free speech. Congress has the power to regulate consumer data privacy, but it is unclear if the political use of this data would be regulated.