Richard S. Whitt — From SOPA to WCIT:CITP Lecture Series
A Glimpse of the Future of Internet Policy
Richard S. Whitt
Corporate VP and Global Head of Public Policy and Government Relations
Motorola Mobility LLC
Mr. Whitt will discuss how public policy grounded in the Internet’s architecture can best ensure that the Net fully enables tangible benefits such as innovation, economic growth, free expression, and user empowerment. In particular, recognizing that the Internet is rapidly becoming society’s chief operating system, Mr. Whitt will examine several recent examples of public policy threats to the Internet’s basic design principles. By contrast, an overarching public policy framework should be faithful to the multifaceted nature of the online world. Adhering to the deferential principle of “respect the functional integrity of the Internet,” in combination with the appropriate institutional and organizational implements, can help ensure that any potential regulation of Internet-based activities enables, rather than hinders, tangible and intangible benefits for end users.
Rick oversees all interactions with government policymakers around the world at Motorola Mobility, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Google. Previously, he spent five and a half years in Google’s DC office, working on a variety of public policy issues. Most recently, he had served as director and managing counsel for federal policy, overseeing strategic thinking on privacy, cybersecurity, intellectual property, Internet governance, free expression, international trade, and telecom and media issues. Prior to joining Google in 2007, Rick founded and headed NetsEdge Consulting, a public policy consulting firm that provided legal analysis, regulatory strategy, and advocacy counsel. From 1994 to 2006, Rick worked in the legal department at MCI Communications, where he served as vice president for federal law and policy. Rick previously spent over five years as an associate attorney in the communications practices of two large Washington, D.C.-based law firms.
Rick is a 1988 cum laude graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center, and a 1984 magna cum laude graduate of James Madison University. He is a resident of Washington, D.C. with his wife Cathy and three well-maintained felines.