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谷歌在多伦多建“智慧城市”,为何当地人会强烈反对?

Alice Tozer 2018年08月12日

当地人主要担心,该项目对本地居民个人数据保护不力,因此其能否推进尚存疑问。

谷歌母公司Alphabet领衔的项目计划在加拿大多伦多湖滨兴建一座“智慧城市”,但遭到当地官员的强烈反对。他们主要担心该项目对本地居民个人数据保护不力。

该项目由Alphabet旗下城市创新实验室Sidewalk Labs、加拿大政府机构多伦多湖滨开发公司和多伦多市有关湖滨改造的公共财产管理者共同开发。7月底,Sidewalk公开宣布,有意在计划交易的下一阶段投资5000万美元。

然而,多伦多当地反对意见很大,项目能否推进存疑。

项目内容包括利用安装在交通信号灯和垃圾处理器上的传感器追踪当地居民行为。关注公民隐私权的团体担心,敏感数据信息可能遭人滥用。为了平息担忧,多伦多湖滨开发公司同意,将遵循居民对个人信息控制权的“指导原则”磋商知识产权和数据隐私权。

可担忧仍未消除。

由于多伦多湖滨开发规划已推迟数月,加之项目里重要人士请辞,形势越发恶化。今年7月,Sidewalk的坚定支持者,也是多伦多湖滨开发公司的首席执行官辞职。8月初,由于不愿与Alphabet当项目合作伙伴,一位房地产开发商退出了董事会。

然而种种障碍可能恰恰证明,如此重大的新任务本身就存在一些问题。以盈利为目的的科技公司与有责任保护公民隐私的政府部门合作时,矛盾尤为突出。

不过如果项目能顺利推行,Alphabet将首次利用技术解决现代社会里城市设计和技术方面的问题,例如房价高企、交通堵塞和环保可持续性等。(财富中文网)

译者:Pessy

审校:夏林

A project headed up by Alphabet, the parent company of Google, and aimed at creating a “smart city” on Toronto’s waterfront, is facing stiff resistance from local officials whose chief concern is how residents’ personal data will be handled.

Behind the project are Sidewalk Labs, an Alphabet subsidiary, and Waterfront Toronto, a Canadian government body and public stewards of the city’s waterfront revitalization. In late July, Sidewalk made public its intentions to invest $50 million for the next planning stage of the deal.

But there have been notable rumbles of local discontent, calling the entire project into question.

As part of the project, residents could be tracked by sensors embedded in traffic lights and garbage-disposal units. Privacy watchdogs have raised concern over who will control such sensitive digital information. To calm these worries, Waterfront Toronto has agreed to negotiate intellectual property ownership and digital privacy rights based on a set of “guiding principles” emphasizing people’s control over their own information.

But worries remain.

Monthly delays surrounding the release of local development plans coupled with the loss of key personnel have only made matters worse. The CEO of the Waterfront Toronto, a staunch supporter of Sidewalk, resigned in July. And in early August, a real-estate developer left the board because she was uncomfortable with Alphabet as a partner.

However, the obstacles may just prove teething problems inherent to such a colossal new task. They bring to the fore the challenges present when for-profit technology companies try to work alongside municipal agencies responsible for safeguarding citizens’ privacy.

If pulled off, it will be Alphabet’s first application of urban design and technology to tackle modern-day issues, such as expensive housing, traffic congestion and environmental sustainability.

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