Info Summit 2018: Changing Perceptions of FOI and Privacy

On Thursday, September 27th, FIPA hosted the 2018 BC Information Summit at UBC Robson Square in Vancouver. This year’s theme explored how changing perceptions around the right to know and the right to one’s privacy are being shaped.

The conference assembled a range of experts from varying backgrounds to look at these developments and discuss what they might mean for information and privacy rights.

In the morning, Sean Holman, Associate Professor of Journalism at Mount Royal University, gave a keynote entitled, The Falling Currency of Democracy: Information as an Instrument of Control and Certainty in the Postwar and Post-truth Eras.

Professor Holman wondered if, in this new age of digital information, our emotional demand for certainty has overpowered our cognitive need for truth.
The morning keynote was followed by panels that discussed the latest developments in FOI and ATI reform and considered how whistleblower laws, like BC’s new PIDA, compare domestically and internationally.

After lunch, BC’s Information and Privacy Commissioner, Michael McEvoy, gave the second keynote of the day about the latest developments in FOI and Privacy.






Commissioner McEvoy addresses the audience at the 2018 BC Information Summit during the afternoon keynote

“There’s no conflict between privacy and access to information,” said Commissioner McEvoy. “They’re united by accountability.”

The afternoon panels discussed personal information, privacy, and political parties and tensions between privacy and the right to know.

FIPA would like to extend a special thank you to the sponsors who made the event possible: CUPE BC, BCGEU, Vancity, Canadian Taxpayers Federation, the OIPC BC, News Media Canada, and Picatic.

A video of the conference will be available to members in the near future.