Lawmaker Invites Internet Users to Craft Privacy Legislation

Launches project on Reddit

Congress got the message. Don't mess with new Internet laws without involving the Internet community unless you want a repeat of the great Internet blackout in January over SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act.

Keeping that lesson in mind, Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.), a member of the Judiciary Committee that eventually killed SOPA, launched Wednesday a Web-based project to enlist Internet users in crafting legislation to protect consumer privacy on mobile devices. Equally telling, he launched on Reddit, one of the leaders of the Internet blackout.

"Congress has tried to shove Internet-related legislation down the public's throat, and we've failed," Johnson said in a statement. "There's an emerging consensus that the law should protect Americans' rights when we share our data with apps and app developers. How that law should be written is a question for the American people. Let's have an open conversation about it."

Consumers can submit their ideas on the website, or via Twitter (@AppRightsUS) and Facebook.

The project has already drawn interest on all three social platforms. Johnson's office has also met with Common Sense Media and other privacy advocates. "We intend to see this through. It's not just a pretty launch," said Jonathan Ossoff, a spokesman for Johnson.