I look at countries who openly publish every piece of legislation that gets debated on and actively invite the public to be part of the legislative process by maintaining extremely high levels of transparency in their government, even going so far as to redesign their legislative houses with symbolically large viewing galleries and windows–you know, countries like Germany who have first-hand knowledge of the dangers of secrecy and backroom dealings in the houses of government–and then I look at my United States of America….
The stealth change would expand the reach of the FBI’s already highly controversial national security letters.
Source: Secret Text in Senate Bill Would Give FBI Warrantless Access to Email Records
Even if you “purchase” an item outright, there is a strong legal argument that you don’t even “own” what you “purchased” thanks to the DMCA. When you lease an item, you waive ALL rights to ownership–sometimes perpetually.
From software that records your every keystroke, to GPS tracking, to ignition kill switches—lenders have more power over their customers than ever.
Source: How Technology Helps Creditors Control Debtors – The Atlantic
Every step you take, every call you make, they are watching you.
Weaknesses within mobile phone network interconnection system allows criminals or governments to remotely snoop on anyone with a phone
Source: Your phone number is all a hacker needs to read texts, listen to calls and track you | Technology | The Guardian
It’s a 21st-century Tortuga; I’m in!
In all seriousness, though, “civilized” nations are pushing more and more for unwarranted surveillance of their citizenry–all in the same of “security”. Freedom depends on transparency and public accountability–the two things that governments fear most. These concepts must be protected, and good on Iceland for taking those steps!
Since the International Modern Media Institute was founded in 2011 it has been an independent watchdog and advocacy group working to promote and protect freedom of expression and freedom of information….
Source: Switzerland of Bits: crowdfunding a haven for freedom of information & free expression / Boing Boing
In what seems to be a complete reversal in position, Microsoft is suing the US government on the grounds that gag orders on warrants are unconstitutional. Good on them! Let’s hope that the courts agree!
“We appreciate that there are times when secrecy around a government warrant is needed,” Microsoft President Brad Smith wrote in a blog post Thursday. “But based on the many secrecy orders we have …
Source: Microsoft sues US government for the right to tell you when the feds are reading your email / Boing Boing
Every step you take, every move you make, they’ll be watching you…except on weekends and federal holidays. The maps are interactive so you can see if you’re being watched, too! (I am, probably).
America is being watched from above. Government surveillance planes routinely circle over most major cities — but usually take the weekends off.
Source: Spies In The Sky: Here’s Where FBI Planes Are Circling U.S. Cities