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Law is dynamic, it is ever changing. It changes with the evolution of society. But the question is, does it change fast enough? Definitely not, when it comes to the evolution of science. Advancements in science, dominated by Information technology i.e. Block Chain, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Robotics, Drones, Wearables, Tactile Internet, Quantum Computing etc. has not just outpaced law makers, but also the human minds.
The exponential growth in information technology has outpaced the human mind and imagination. One could argue that with the advancements in science, governments should invest in staying ahead of the curve, in order to be able to make laws to regulate the unimaginable. After all, the majority of the current laws in India were drafted in the 19th century and they have stood the test of time with amendments, so why can’t we draft laws for the future of information technology. The answer is that the laws drafted in the 19th century were not written from scratch but were based on then-existing customs, laws and rules that had taken shape in societies over centuries. What the lawmakers essentially did was amend and codify the then existing laws. Even the Constitution of India has borrowed pieces from other constitutions around the world. Dr BR Ambedkar rightly said that it was created after ransacking the known Constitutions across the world. However, when it comes to introducing laws, to deal with the advancements in science, we do not have a foundation to build on.
Facebook is the biggest social network worldwide, it had close to 3 billion monthly active users in early 2021. Until the Cambridge Analytica scandal happened, most people could not have imagined that this innocent looking, community building platform, that helps us connect with our family and friends across the world, for free, could be misusing subscribers data. In 2018, the video of a senator asking Mark Zukerberg, how Facebook makes money in spite of being free, went viral. How can one potentially make laws for something that one’s mind cannot possibly conceive?
Law must keep pace with the changing times, but for that, the human mind should be able to understand these advancements. In order to try keeping pace with the advancements in science, the law makers must invest in staying relevant (science fiction could help).
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