On a Monday morning in Salzburg, Austria, in the crisp air beneath the Austrian Alps, Justice Anthony Kennedy spoke to a room of 80 students about an unfolding world. For an 80-year-old man, Kennedy proved knowledgeable about the murky future of the cyber age. Kennedy was a special guest at the Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change, where lectures focused on the role of populism in global change.
"Journalists have to begin to understand we are in a new world," Kennedy told the students, over the course of an hour. He described the unprecedented change that the internet had brought to the profession, and the immeasurable impact that digitalization has played on the Fourth Pillar.
He said: "The cyber age has tremendous potential, as indicated with Wikipedia. But if it bypasses space and time where there's just this obsession with the present – this neglect of our heritage and history – then our world will change."
Perhaps surprisingly, he also praised the unique capacities of Wikipedia, lauding its ability to bring inspirational works to a modern world, at an unprecedented speed and volume.
Perhaps surprisingly, he also praised the unique capacities of Wikipedia, lauding its ability to bring inspirational works to a modern world.
Supreme Court Justices make use of their summer break in different ways. Justice Kennedy first visited Salzberg in 1988 – the same year he was appointed to the Supreme Court, so Salzburg has become an important, though somewhat unseen part of his career as Supreme Court Justice.
For years, Kennedy has taught International and American law at the University of Salzburg in Austria during the court's summer recess. The class is offered as part of the University of the Pacific's McGeorge School of Law's summer program. Justice Kennedy made a custom of visiting Salzburg, the gorgeous postcard of a town near the southern border of Germany, a peaceful, village-like town full of waterfalls and palaces.