Can technology really “disrupt” the 2016 election? Not according to Jessica Rosenworcel, FCC Commissioner and one of the few Washington DC insiders with a genuine affinity with Silicon Valley. Yes, Rosenworcel acknowledge, the election can help mend the political system. And, yes, technology is the new “red hot center” of American economic and cultural life which can help Washington DC take more risks. But, Rosenworcel believes, technology isn’t going to fundamentally change the upcoming election.
That said, Rosenworcel – who spoke to me in her office in the FCC building in downtown DC – hopes that digital issues will play an increasingly central role in the election. In particular, she thinks that data privacy, technological unemployment and the Internet of Things will become major issues. And then there’s spectrum, a “sexy issue” according to Rosenworcel, that should be a priority for all candidates on both left and right. Digital has “entered our pockets and purses”, she reminds us, it’s “ubiquitous” and thus government should be making sure that all Americans have access to the speediest wireless broadband.