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We became a [Surveillance State] and the world cried out "So What?"

Fuzzy Cumulonimbus CloudFuzzy Cumulonimbus Cloud EthletePlease Eat Doritos™, Like And SubscribeRegistered User regular
I'm seeing surveillance topics rise up in multiple threads today so I'm making a general thread here for discussion of NSA, PRISM, Boundless Informant, and Snowden. Anything else pertinent can be discussed as well.

Topical Links Ahoy:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/08/nsa-boundless-informant-global-datamining?guni=Network front:network-front full-width-1 bento-box:Bento box:Position1
boundless-heatmap-008.jpg
The color scheme ranges from green (least subjected to surveillance) through yellow and orange to red (most surveillance).

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/09/nsa-whistleblower-edward-snowden-why
Snowden wrote:
"You see things that may be disturbing. When you see everything you realise that some of these things are abusive. The awareness of wrong-doing builds up. There was not one morning when I woke up [and decided this is it]. It was a natural process.

"A lot of people in 2008 voted for Obama. I did not vote for him. I voted for a third party. But I believed in Obama's promises. I was going to disclose it [but waited because of his election]. He continued with the policies of his predecessor."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/09/us-china-summit-barack-obama-xi-jinping?guni=Network front:network-front main-3 Main trailblock:Network front - main trailblock:Position1




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Posts

  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    This story has certainly got legs. There are also international aspects too - people in the UK are asking questions about whether or not GCHQ (I guess the equivalent to your NSA?) has been involved in the US story

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/09/prism-gchq-william-hague-statement

    In NZ there has been a long slow scandal relating to the NZ equivalent, GCSB, being involved in illegal domestic surveillance over Kim Dot Com's arrest and an unrelated terrorism trial. At the time it was illegal for GCSB assist in surveillance of residents or citizens, but it seems like the agency and the NZ Police service were both a bit confused on that point. Emergency legislation was passed recently to actually make this legal. Part of the scandal involved a leak into the official enquiry on the topic, which has now lead to a Government minister resigning, which could result in criminal charges (as it is alleged he leaked the report). This Minister and another are also at risk as part of the wider scandal and it could possibly end up in a snap/early election, if things get any worse


    http://www.scoop.co.nz/sections/nzpolitics.html

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    I personally find this all very tiring to hear about because nothing is going to change.

    At the end of the day people will be hard-pressed to actually realize any harm from the possibility that someone at the NSA might've downloaded their cat pictures from their Gmail.

    And, frankly, this has been an obvious danger since "the cloud" became a thing. It seems oddly hypocritical to be totally ok with Google parsing literally all your data in some cases, but then freaking out when the government does it for national security, in a world where that seems like something that's quite a good idea to do.

  • SticksSticks Registered User regular
    edited June 2013
    I personally find this all very tiring to hear about because nothing is going to change.

    At the end of the day people will be hard-pressed to actually realize any harm from the possibility that someone at the NSA might've downloaded their cat pictures from their Gmail.

    And, frankly, this has been an obvious danger since "the cloud" became a thing. It seems oddly hypocritical to be totally ok with Google parsing literally all your data in some cases, but then freaking out when the government does it for national security, in a world where that seems like something that's quite a good idea to do.

    Last I checked, Google doesn't have the ability to imprison you based on what they might find in your data. Not that it isn't a problem there as well, as has been discussed in the privacy/Glass thread.

    Sticks on
  • Phoenix-DPhoenix-D Registered User regular
    I personally find this all very tiring to hear about because nothing is going to change.

    At the end of the day people will be hard-pressed to actually realize any harm from the possibility that someone at the NSA might've downloaded their cat pictures from their Gmail.

    And, frankly, this has been an obvious danger since "the cloud" became a thing. It seems oddly hypocritical to be totally ok with Google parsing literally all your data in some cases, but then freaking out when the government does it for national security, in a world where that seems like something that's quite a good idea to do.

    The governments definition of "national security" has a history of being flawed. And there's an equally nasty history of that information being abused.

  • RichyRichy Registered User regular
    The focus of the internal NSA tool is on counting and categorizing the records of communications, known as metadata, rather than the content of an email or instant message.

    Colour me unworried.

    sig.gif
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    Sticks wrote: »
    I personally find this all very tiring to hear about because nothing is going to change.

    At the end of the day people will be hard-pressed to actually realize any harm from the possibility that someone at the NSA might've downloaded their cat pictures from their Gmail.

    And, frankly, this has been an obvious danger since "the cloud" became a thing. It seems oddly hypocritical to be totally ok with Google parsing literally all your data in some cases, but then freaking out when the government does it for national security, in a world where that seems like something that's quite a good idea to do.

    Last I checked, Google doesn't have the ability to imprison you based on what they might find in your data. Not that it isn't a problem there as well, as has been discussed in the privacy/Glass thread.

    Which the government can, hypothetically do for no reason at all if they want to as well! Surveillance is not the problem.

    The fact Bradley Manning has been subjected to cruel and unusual punishment is. The fact Guantanamo is still open, with people being held without trial or prosecuted with "secret evidence" is.

    If someone were actually doing something illegal using these services, like say, coordinating a plot to bomb an airliner, it seems like a pretty good idea that the authorities be able to efficiently subpoena their information.

  • OneAngryPossumOneAngryPossum Registered User regular
    edited June 2013
    I'm gonna go ahead and let you know that our intelligence ops are terrible at knowing if something nefarious is happening. This quantity of data doesn't help, it's just more shit on the pile of things that people use to support their assumptions. It's reading tea leaves.

    Edit: For all the swelling of our surveillance ranks, there are nowhere near enough people to handle this load of information in an intelligent way.

    OneAngryPossum on
  • autono-wally, erotibot300autono-wally, erotibot300 love machine Registered User regular
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/09/edward-snowden-nsa-whistleblower-surveillance

    the source is revealed.

    he is residing in hong kong, which I guess is a pretty smart move. just that I don't know what the chinese would do to get their hands on what he knows that he DIDN'T leak

    kFJhXwE.jpgkFJhXwE.jpg
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    I'm gonna go ahead and let you know that our intelligence ops are terrible at knowing if something nefarious is happening. This quantity of data doesn't help, it's just more shit on the pile of things that people use to support their assumptions. It's reading tea leaves.

    Edit: For all the swelling of our surveillance ranks, there are nowhere near enough people to handle this load of information in an intelligent way.

    Well that sure seems to disagree with the public statements of what PRISM is all about, which is an efficient subpoena method for data from the accounts of major social media/cloud providers for individuals and their contacts. You know, the type of stuff you would call in when you find a person of interest and want to vet them quickly.

  • SticksSticks Registered User regular
    edited June 2013
    Sticks wrote: »
    I personally find this all very tiring to hear about because nothing is going to change.

    At the end of the day people will be hard-pressed to actually realize any harm from the possibility that someone at the NSA might've downloaded their cat pictures from their Gmail.

    And, frankly, this has been an obvious danger since "the cloud" became a thing. It seems oddly hypocritical to be totally ok with Google parsing literally all your data in some cases, but then freaking out when the government does it for national security, in a world where that seems like something that's quite a good idea to do.

    Last I checked, Google doesn't have the ability to imprison you based on what they might find in your data. Not that it isn't a problem there as well, as has been discussed in the privacy/Glass thread.

    Which the government can, hypothetically do for no reason at all if they want to as well! Surveillance is not the problem.

    The fact Bradley Manning has been subjected to cruel and unusual punishment is. The fact Guantanamo is still open, with people being held without trial or prosecuted with "secret evidence" is.

    If someone were actually doing something illegal using these services, like say, coordinating a plot to bomb an airliner, it seems like a pretty good idea that the authorities be able to efficiently subpoena their information.

    Sure they could in theory, but the sort of government that spies on it's citizens is far more likely to do so in practice than one that does not.

    I'm simply not willing to trade privacy for the illusion of safety.

    Sticks on
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    Sticks wrote: »
    Sticks wrote: »
    I personally find this all very tiring to hear about because nothing is going to change.

    At the end of the day people will be hard-pressed to actually realize any harm from the possibility that someone at the NSA might've downloaded their cat pictures from their Gmail.

    And, frankly, this has been an obvious danger since "the cloud" became a thing. It seems oddly hypocritical to be totally ok with Google parsing literally all your data in some cases, but then freaking out when the government does it for national security, in a world where that seems like something that's quite a good idea to do.

    Last I checked, Google doesn't have the ability to imprison you based on what they might find in your data. Not that it isn't a problem there as well, as has been discussed in the privacy/Glass thread.

    Which the government can, hypothetically do for no reason at all if they want to as well! Surveillance is not the problem.

    The fact Bradley Manning has been subjected to cruel and unusual punishment is. The fact Guantanamo is still open, with people being held without trial or prosecuted with "secret evidence" is.

    If someone were actually doing something illegal using these services, like say, coordinating a plot to bomb an airliner, it seems like a pretty good idea that the authorities be able to efficiently subpoena their information.

    Sure they could in theory, but the sort of government that spies on it's citizens is far more likely to do so in practice than one that does not.

    I'm simply not willing to trade privacy for the illusion of safety.

    Why? What is the correlation here? Like, please explain how one of these things leads to to sudden tyranny. Did the NSA dissolve the courts system?

  • redxredx I(x)=2(x)+1 whole numbersRegistered User regular
    I'm gonna go ahead and let you know that our intelligence ops are terrible at knowing if something nefarious is happening. This quantity of data doesn't help, it's just more shit on the pile of things that people use to support their assumptions. It's reading tea leaves.

    Edit: For all the swelling of our surveillance ranks, there are nowhere near enough people to handle this load of information in an intelligent way.

    That's sort of what technology is for. You don't pile in on people, you store it in a data warehouse and then pull information and even knowledge from it. This is kinda a huge field in computer science where a lot of work is being done in both the public and private sectors.

    It's sort of witchcraft, but there's a lot of people that believe in it, and it is advancing and gaining influence because it creates quantifiably valuable results.

    This machine kills threads.
  • DerrickDerrick Registered User regular
    Sticks wrote: »
    Sticks wrote: »
    I personally find this all very tiring to hear about because nothing is going to change.

    At the end of the day people will be hard-pressed to actually realize any harm from the possibility that someone at the NSA might've downloaded their cat pictures from their Gmail.

    And, frankly, this has been an obvious danger since "the cloud" became a thing. It seems oddly hypocritical to be totally ok with Google parsing literally all your data in some cases, but then freaking out when the government does it for national security, in a world where that seems like something that's quite a good idea to do.

    Last I checked, Google doesn't have the ability to imprison you based on what they might find in your data. Not that it isn't a problem there as well, as has been discussed in the privacy/Glass thread.

    Which the government can, hypothetically do for no reason at all if they want to as well! Surveillance is not the problem.

    The fact Bradley Manning has been subjected to cruel and unusual punishment is. The fact Guantanamo is still open, with people being held without trial or prosecuted with "secret evidence" is.

    If someone were actually doing something illegal using these services, like say, coordinating a plot to bomb an airliner, it seems like a pretty good idea that the authorities be able to efficiently subpoena their information.

    Sure they could in theory, but the sort of government that spies on it's citizens is far more likely to do so in practice than one that does not.

    I'm simply not willing to trade privacy for the illusion of safety.

    Why? What is the correlation here? Like, please explain how one of these things leads to to sudden tyranny. Did the NSA dissolve the courts system?

    How would they go about that? Maybe by deciding that they don't need Probable Cause or a warrant (given by the courts) to deny 4th Amendment Rights?

    Interesting.

    Steam and CFN: Enexemander
  • AManFromEarthAManFromEarth Let's get to twerk! The King in the SwampRegistered User regular
    I'm far more worried about Google, Microsoft, Steam, et al having infinite access to my information than some overblown government conspiracy, really.

    Lh96QHG.png
  • OneAngryPossumOneAngryPossum Registered User regular
    edited June 2013
    If that's all PRISM actually amounts to, then it's a useless layer taped on top of a system that more closely resembles the original description of a data vacuum.

    These denials don't jive with what I saw in my work, what the whistleblower is describing does. There's more to it than a means of requesting targeted data from various companies, I assure you. Not that anybody sees .0001% of what's collected, but it gets collected, and collected in huge swaths. There are strict provisions as to accessing anything that isn't at least partially international, but as many of the articles on this have mentioned, those provisions have been largely swept away as communications have become more broad.

    Almost all of the policy is outdated stuff grounded in a world where telephones were the primary means of communication. As that evolved, so did our ability to grab data from new sources, but the laws restricting what and when and why we can peek at things hasn't kept up.

    OneAngryPossum on
  • KetBraKetBra FISTS OF JUSTICE! Registered User regular
    Sticks wrote: »
    Sticks wrote: »
    I personally find this all very tiring to hear about because nothing is going to change.

    At the end of the day people will be hard-pressed to actually realize any harm from the possibility that someone at the NSA might've downloaded their cat pictures from their Gmail.

    And, frankly, this has been an obvious danger since "the cloud" became a thing. It seems oddly hypocritical to be totally ok with Google parsing literally all your data in some cases, but then freaking out when the government does it for national security, in a world where that seems like something that's quite a good idea to do.

    Last I checked, Google doesn't have the ability to imprison you based on what they might find in your data. Not that it isn't a problem there as well, as has been discussed in the privacy/Glass thread.

    Which the government can, hypothetically do for no reason at all if they want to as well! Surveillance is not the problem.

    The fact Bradley Manning has been subjected to cruel and unusual punishment is. The fact Guantanamo is still open, with people being held without trial or prosecuted with "secret evidence" is.

    If someone were actually doing something illegal using these services, like say, coordinating a plot to bomb an airliner, it seems like a pretty good idea that the authorities be able to efficiently subpoena their information.

    Sure they could in theory, but the sort of government that spies on it's citizens is far more likely to do so in practice than one that does not.

    I'm simply not willing to trade privacy for the illusion of safety.

    Why? What is the correlation here? Like, please explain how one of these things leads to to sudden tyranny. Did the NSA dissolve the courts system?

    It seems to me like a big part of all this automated data collection is to remove the court system from the process on a case-by-case basis.

    ohKiGmg.png
    Steam Bnet:KetBra#1692
  • OneAngryPossumOneAngryPossum Registered User regular
    redx wrote: »
    I'm gonna go ahead and let you know that our intelligence ops are terrible at knowing if something nefarious is happening. This quantity of data doesn't help, it's just more shit on the pile of things that people use to support their assumptions. It's reading tea leaves.

    Edit: For all the swelling of our surveillance ranks, there are nowhere near enough people to handle this load of information in an intelligent way.

    That's sort of what technology is for. You don't pile in on people, you store it in a data warehouse and then pull information and even knowledge from it. This is kinda a huge field in computer science where a lot of work is being done in both the public and private sectors.

    It's sort of witchcraft, but there's a lot of people that believe in it, and it is advancing and gaining influence because it creates quantifiably valuable results.

    I'm aware of that, but at the end of the day it's human beings interpreting the results, and there is too much information. Even incredibly small scale operations are overwhelmed with data input right now, post filtering.

    And this isn't even addressing how much of the actual content isn't in English. Our language people are pretty awful as well, and machines aren't doing the translator job any better, especially in a real life scenario.

  • AManFromEarthAManFromEarth Let's get to twerk! The King in the SwampRegistered User regular
    Get involved, run for office, support Democrats (or Republicans, I guess, if you have to...) who are savy with your opinions.

    This doesn't get fixed until us millennials start taking, and I mean taking, the reigns away from boomers. Until then the law is going to continue to lag behind technology.

    Lh96QHG.png
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    Derrick wrote: »
    Sticks wrote: »
    Sticks wrote: »
    I personally find this all very tiring to hear about because nothing is going to change.

    At the end of the day people will be hard-pressed to actually realize any harm from the possibility that someone at the NSA might've downloaded their cat pictures from their Gmail.

    And, frankly, this has been an obvious danger since "the cloud" became a thing. It seems oddly hypocritical to be totally ok with Google parsing literally all your data in some cases, but then freaking out when the government does it for national security, in a world where that seems like something that's quite a good idea to do.

    Last I checked, Google doesn't have the ability to imprison you based on what they might find in your data. Not that it isn't a problem there as well, as has been discussed in the privacy/Glass thread.

    Which the government can, hypothetically do for no reason at all if they want to as well! Surveillance is not the problem.

    The fact Bradley Manning has been subjected to cruel and unusual punishment is. The fact Guantanamo is still open, with people being held without trial or prosecuted with "secret evidence" is.

    If someone were actually doing something illegal using these services, like say, coordinating a plot to bomb an airliner, it seems like a pretty good idea that the authorities be able to efficiently subpoena their information.

    Sure they could in theory, but the sort of government that spies on it's citizens is far more likely to do so in practice than one that does not.

    I'm simply not willing to trade privacy for the illusion of safety.

    Why? What is the correlation here? Like, please explain how one of these things leads to to sudden tyranny. Did the NSA dissolve the courts system?

    How would they go about that? Maybe by deciding that they don't need Probable Cause or a warrant (given by the courts) to deny 4th Amendment Rights?

    Interesting.

    What I am getting at is everyone says surveillance --> tyranny as if this is some type of obvious correlation we should take as a given.

    Why should we take it as a given? You have to act on the information you gather. Is the NSA rounding up average Americans because they post on a forum about this? Are they blackmailing people by threatening to reveal their sexual fetishes to the world if they don't vote <partyline>?

    I mean we've got "governments which surveil their citizens are more likely to lock them up". I mean really? Iran can't do this at all, they just grab people they see on the Daily Show apparently, in far greater quantity. Been to Zimbabwe? They cut you up pretty much if they just feel like it.

    So where exactly is the imminent threat from effectively non-intrusive surveillance coming from, compared to say, a public which cheers and declares we should start removing rights everytime a "terrorist" is arrested?

  • Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
    Are they blackmailing people by threatening to reveal their sexual fetishes to the world if they don't vote <partyline>?

    Oh, God. I suddenly care. No one must know about my erotic tugboat chat logs.

    Friend Code: 1590-5696-7916
    Friend Safari Type: Rock
  • MillMill Registered User regular
    Yeah, one of the elephants in the room that the hysterical people don't want to acknowledge is that collecting, processing, interpreting and acting on data are all very different things. Vacuuming up the data isn't that scary because it's just going to sit there if no one is able to process it. If the data hasn't be processed, it's unlikely that anyone will bother interpreting it. If no one interprets that data, then no one is going to act on.

    I don't know how long it will be until we get to a point where a computer program can do the two middle steps. Ideally, we should have something in place to make it really hard to abuse such a system.

    Also I give zero fucks if the government is taking things available to the public and make backups. I care more about what information they are getting hold of, where someone has a reasonable expectation of privacy. I give zero shits if the NSA has a file of all my posts of this board, if I didn't want certain people to see them ever, I wouldn't be posting on a board open to the public. Now my e-mail, that's another matter.

    Ultimately, assuming people stop getting suckered in by the "we must have a security state to prevent the terrorists from winning" bullshit. I'm hopeful, that people will keep electing enough people to make it impossible for the government to get away with too much of this kind of shit. I'm finding I'm in agreement with AMFE, I'm more worried about corporations having access to this capability. I just see them having less checks on this kind of power and the obsession with maximizing the bottom line tends to be a very toxic and corrupting element.

  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    Mill wrote: »
    Ultimately, assuming people stop getting suckered in by the "we must have a security state to prevent the terrorists from winning" bullshit. I'm hopeful, that people will keep electing enough people to make it impossible for the government to get away with too much of this kind of shit. I'm finding I'm in agreement with AMFE, I'm more worried about corporations having access to this capability. I just see them having less checks on this kind of power and the obsession with maximizing the bottom line tends to be a very toxic and corrupting element.

    Which again: corporations already do. That's kind of the point of PRISM. It's access to your data you freely escrowed unencrypted to corporations, with which they can actually pretty much do as they please within various limits.

  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Yeah, it never seems clear what the issue is. Cause so far, what seems to be happening is the government is subpoenaing information in private databases.

    So is the problem that the government has that information instead of just a corporation?
    Is the problem that a corporation has it?
    Is the problem what they do with that information?
    Is the problem that it just sounds bad?

    It seems so much of this is based on unexplained and unexamined axioms about things that are "bad" with no explanation as to what those things are and why they are bad, beyond vague handwaving.

  • MortiousMortious The Nightmare Begins Move to New ZealandRegistered User regular
    Richy wrote: »
    The focus of the internal NSA tool is on counting and categorizing the records of communications, known as metadata, rather than the content of an email or instant message.

    Colour me unworried.

    What would the Government want with metadata?

    Move to New Zealand
    It’s not a very important country most of the time
    http://steamcommunity.com/id/mortious
  • spacekungfumanspacekungfuman Poor and minority-filled Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    I don't care at all if the government has all my data, as long as they don't give it to anyone else. Google having it terrifies me. One is a representative government that is responsible for running the country, the other is a private company seeking profit. I'll trust the former every time.

    7zh9uu9etcor.jpg
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  • HenroidHenroid Internet Pariah Going nowhere, but fast.Registered User regular
    Mortious wrote: »
    Richy wrote: »
    The focus of the internal NSA tool is on counting and categorizing the records of communications, known as metadata, rather than the content of an email or instant message.

    Colour me unworried.

    What would the Government want with metadata?

    They could be measuring communication rate so they can chart the growth pattern and any atypical spikes.

    Don't accept centrism. Don't let them bully you.
    American politics isn't 4D chess, it's just if you give a shit about other people or not.
  • syndalissyndalis Getting Classy On the WallRegistered User, Loves Apple Products regular
    edited June 2013
    I don't care at all if the government has all my data, as long as they don't give it to anyone else. Google having it terrifies me. One is a representative government that is responsible for running the country, the other is a private company seeking profit. I'll trust the former every time.

    I mean, I would much rather that nobody had a massive database of everything I have done. First and foremost let me get that out of the way. I don't do much Social networking, I don't use gmail for my personal communications (and my business google apps account is purely business, and never gets used to discuss things I would be embarrassed to come out), and I use youtube to upload videos of me singing karaoke. So I preface this by saying that I am opposed to willfully giving my personal information and secrets to anyone.

    But why I should trust google over the government? Or only be mad that such a database exists now that the government has it when google, Microsoft, Apple et al have been doing it for years or decades... that kind of reeks of libertarianism, where the free market is allowed and the government is inherently evil.

    syndalis on
    SW-4158-3990-6116
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  • AManFromEarthAManFromEarth Let's get to twerk! The King in the SwampRegistered User regular
    I don't care at all if the government has all my data, as long as they don't give it to anyone else. Google having it terrifies me. One is a representative government that is responsible for running the country, the other is a private company seeking profit. I'll trust the former every time.

    I'd rather be at the mercy of a king than a company. You can cut off the head of a king.

    Lh96QHG.png
  • MortiousMortious The Nightmare Begins Move to New ZealandRegistered User regular
    edited June 2013
    Henroid wrote: »
    Mortious wrote: »
    Richy wrote: »
    The focus of the internal NSA tool is on counting and categorizing the records of communications, known as metadata, rather than the content of an email or instant message.

    Colour me unworried.

    What would the Government want with metadata?

    They could be measuring communication rate so they can chart the growth pattern and any atypical spikes.

    ?

    Still not sure how that's going to help (specifically in the sphere of national security)

    Edit: And I'm not being intentionally difficult here.

    I honestly can't think of a reason why metadata could be useful in preventing a terrorist attack.

    I can see it being useful in more social and political spheres though, but I don't think the NSA is involved with those?

    Having the incumbent party have access to that sort of data during an election could be interesting.

    Mortious on
    Move to New Zealand
    It’s not a very important country most of the time
    http://steamcommunity.com/id/mortious
  • SticksSticks Registered User regular
    shryke wrote: »
    Yeah, it never seems clear what the issue is. Cause so far, what seems to be happening is the government is subpoenaing information in private databases.

    So is the problem that the government has that information instead of just a corporation?
    Is the problem that a corporation has it?
    Is the problem what they do with that information?
    Is the problem that it just sounds bad?

    It seems so much of this is based on unexplained and unexamined axioms about things that are "bad" with no explanation as to what those things are and why they are bad, beyond vague handwaving.

    The problem is that they are taking data which people (perhaps naively) believe to be private. Whether they are doing anything with it currently is entirely beside the point. They now have it, it is now able to be abused. A situation exists where abuse could happen. A situation for abuse exists inside a group of agencies with all the transparency of a brick wall.

    Do you trust everyone who might have access to that data? How could you, you don't even know who has access. But even if you did, what about the people with access after the next election? A decade from now? The next time an unscrupulous bastard like Nixon has office?

    All of this in the name of making us "safe".

  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Mortious wrote: »
    Henroid wrote: »
    Mortious wrote: »
    Richy wrote: »
    The focus of the internal NSA tool is on counting and categorizing the records of communications, known as metadata, rather than the content of an email or instant message.

    Colour me unworried.

    What would the Government want with metadata?

    They could be measuring communication rate so they can chart the growth pattern and any atypical spikes.

    ?

    Still not sure how that's going to help (specifically in the sphere of national security)

    As an example, you monitor communications to get an idea of what the baseline is and then look for large divergences from that baseline and then see if those divergences match a pattern that would indicate some sort of security problem.

    ie - "Why is there a huge spike in calls between this number in New York and Yemen this month?"

  • HenroidHenroid Internet Pariah Going nowhere, but fast.Registered User regular
    Mortious wrote: »
    Henroid wrote: »
    Mortious wrote: »
    Richy wrote: »
    The focus of the internal NSA tool is on counting and categorizing the records of communications, known as metadata, rather than the content of an email or instant message.

    Colour me unworried.

    What would the Government want with metadata?

    They could be measuring communication rate so they can chart the growth pattern and any atypical spikes.

    ?

    Still not sure how that's going to help (specifically in the sphere of national security)

    I don't either, I was just throwing out the first thought that came to mind. It depends on how narrow track that data.

    At any rate SKFM said it best.

    Don't accept centrism. Don't let them bully you.
    American politics isn't 4D chess, it's just if you give a shit about other people or not.
  • QuidQuid I don't... what... hnnng Registered User regular
    edited June 2013
    Mortious wrote: »
    Henroid wrote: »
    Mortious wrote: »
    Richy wrote: »
    The focus of the internal NSA tool is on counting and categorizing the records of communications, known as metadata, rather than the content of an email or instant message.

    Colour me unworried.

    What would the Government want with metadata?

    They could be measuring communication rate so they can chart the growth pattern and any atypical spikes.

    ?

    Still not sure how that's going to help (specifically in the sphere of national security)

    First just to be clear, do you know what metadata is?

    I'm not trying to be a jerk or anything but it's something a lot of people don't know anything about.

    Quid on
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    Sticks wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    Yeah, it never seems clear what the issue is. Cause so far, what seems to be happening is the government is subpoenaing information in private databases.

    So is the problem that the government has that information instead of just a corporation?
    Is the problem that a corporation has it?
    Is the problem what they do with that information?
    Is the problem that it just sounds bad?

    It seems so much of this is based on unexplained and unexamined axioms about things that are "bad" with no explanation as to what those things are and why they are bad, beyond vague handwaving.

    The problem is that they are taking data which people (perhaps naively) believe to be private. Whether they are doing anything with it currently is entirely beside the point. They now have it, it is now able to be abused. A situation exists where abuse could happen. A situation for abuse exists inside a group of agencies with all the transparency of a brick wall.

    Do you trust everyone who might have access to that data? How could you, you don't even know who has access. But even if you did, what about the people with access after the next election? A decade from now? The next time an unscrupulous bastard like Nixon has office?

    All of this in the name of making us "safe".

    Copy/Paste for "Google", "Microsoft" etc.

    How do you know who has access to start with?

  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Sticks wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    Yeah, it never seems clear what the issue is. Cause so far, what seems to be happening is the government is subpoenaing information in private databases.

    So is the problem that the government has that information instead of just a corporation?
    Is the problem that a corporation has it?
    Is the problem what they do with that information?
    Is the problem that it just sounds bad?

    It seems so much of this is based on unexplained and unexamined axioms about things that are "bad" with no explanation as to what those things are and why they are bad, beyond vague handwaving.

    The problem is that they are taking data which people (perhaps naively) believe to be private. Whether they are doing anything with it currently is entirely beside the point. They now have it, it is now able to be abused. A situation exists where abuse could happen. A situation for abuse exists inside a group of agencies with all the transparency of a brick wall.

    Do you trust everyone who might have access to that data? How could you, you don't even know who has access. But even if you did, what about the people with access after the next election? A decade from now? The next time an unscrupulous bastard like Nixon has office?

    All of this in the name of making us "safe".

    But they aren't taking it. That data already exists and is most definitely not private. It belongs to a corporation.

    So, again, what's the problem? That the government took it from a corporation? That a corporation has it? What?

    Your point ignores everything I actually wrote and falls into exactly the kind of vague argument I'm talking about.

  • AManFromEarthAManFromEarth Let's get to twerk! The King in the SwampRegistered User regular
    Why is it better that Google has it? Why is the problem who is accessing this stuff and not that it isn't inaccessible?

    Lh96QHG.png
  • MortiousMortious The Nightmare Begins Move to New ZealandRegistered User regular
    Quid wrote: »
    Mortious wrote: »
    Henroid wrote: »
    Mortious wrote: »
    Richy wrote: »
    The focus of the internal NSA tool is on counting and categorizing the records of communications, known as metadata, rather than the content of an email or instant message.

    Colour me unworried.

    What would the Government want with metadata?

    They could be measuring communication rate so they can chart the growth pattern and any atypical spikes.

    ?

    Still not sure how that's going to help (specifically in the sphere of national security)

    First just to be clear, do you know what metadata is?

    I'm not trying to be a jerk or anything but it's something a lot of people don't know anything about.

    Good question.

    My understanding is it's the summary (not the best word, but I'm at a loss for a better one) of a collection of data.

    So it's data of the data if you want to phrase it that way.

    Move to New Zealand
    It’s not a very important country most of the time
    http://steamcommunity.com/id/mortious
  • Phoenix-DPhoenix-D Registered User regular
    Your argument is the content of people's emails, Skype calls, and phone calls belongs to the corporation that's facilitating them?

  • OneAngryPossumOneAngryPossum Registered User regular
    edited June 2013
    Honestly, my main complaint with it is that it's tremendously wasteful, direly broad in it's targeting, and whatever gets gleaned from it is treated as infallible. Obviously I can't shake the idea that there's something inherently wrong with all my communications being passively monitored (and I'm not even a privacy nut for the most part, but that's a big thing to shrug off), but the thing that sticks in my teeth is the inefficiency, waste, and the faux 'concreteness' of this kind of information that gives intel folk a false sense of confidence, especially as it moves up the ladder.

    OneAngryPossum on
  • Ninja Snarl PNinja Snarl P My helmet is my burden. Ninja Snarl: Gone, but not forgotten.Registered User regular
    Personally, I'm completely astonished that anybody who lives in a modern society and has had any sort of education regarding history can look at something like this and go "whatever". Control of information is control. It's as true right now as it was a thousand years or three thousand years ago. If you control the information, you control what people think, and thus what the government can get away with.

    For everybody saying "pssh, so what?", yeah, I have a lot of heavy-duty doubt about something like this being used right now to target individuals (at least as a general practice), but if the potential is there, it will be used. It's human nature to try and take control, and something like this makes it as simple as government personnel pulling up a file on a prominent dissenting figure. And as has already been pointed out, Google can't send a SWAT team to kick in your front door because you said a naughty thing about their company, so yeah, there's a pretty damn huge difference between letting a corporation hold information for you and the government taking that information under the auspices of "protecting" you.

    Sure, this isn't an immediate matter of the government trying to force what they think is best on everybody and stepping on all dissenters, but this is a really solid step in a direction to allow that. That educated individuals could so casually dismiss the topic is outright chilling.

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