#1
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/09/edward-snowden-nsa-whistleblower-surveillance

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/08/nsa-prism-server-collection-facebook-google

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/09/technology-giants-nsa-prism-surveillance

As it's not been discussed outside of the political thread I wanted a more general response. With all the furore over past things like CISPA and SOPA, this is probably going to be the biggest tech story for years.

Let's discuss.
#2
Read a bit about it. Pretty shitty. But really everyone knows they're always being monitored anyway.
#3
True, but not to the extent that it seems is possible. And given that the US has apparently been given free reign to monitor whatever it wants is pretty shocking.
#7
Eh, keeps guys like Winston Smith in a job
edit: actually he worked in a different department so ignore me while I wallow in half remembered literature
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
Last edited by Hydra150 at Jun 10, 2013,
#8
I live in a country generally assumed to be a dictatorship. One of the Arab spring countries. I have lived through curfews and have seen the outcomes of the sort of surveillance now being revealed in the US. People here talking about curfews aren't realizing what that actually FEELS like. It isn't about having to go inside, and the practicality of that. It's about creating the feeling that everyone, everything is watching. A few points:

1) the purpose of this surveillance from the governments point of view is to control enemies of the state. Not terrorists. People who are coalescing around ideas that would destabilize the status quo. These could be religious ideas. These could be groups like anon who are too good with tech for the governments liking. It makes it very easy to know who these people are. It also makes it very simple to control these people.

Lets say you are a college student and you get in with some people who want to stop farming practices that hurt animals. So you make a plan and go to protest these practices. You get there, and wow, the protest is huge. You never expected this, you were just goofing off. Well now everyone who was there is suspect. Even though you technically had the right to protest, you're now considered a dangerous person.

With this tech in place, the government doesn't have to put you in jail. They can do something more sinister. They can just email you a sexy picture you took with a girlfriend. Or they can email you a note saying that they can prove your dad is cheating on his taxes. Or they can threaten to get your dad fired. All you have to do, the email says, is help them catch your friends in the group. You have to report back every week, or you dad might lose his job. So you do. You turn in your friends and even though they try to keep meetings off grid, you're reporting on them to protect your dad.

2) Let's say number one goes on. The country is a weird place now. Really weird. Pretty soon, a movement springs up like occupy, except its bigger this time. People are really serious, and they are saying they want a government without this power. I guess people are realizing that it is a serious deal. You see on the news that tear gas was fired. Your friend calls you, frantic. They're shooting people. Oh my god. you never signed up for this. You say, **** it. My dad might lose his job but I won't be responsible for anyone dying. That's going too far. You refuse to report anymore. You just stop going to meetings. You stay at home, and try not to watch the news. Three days later, police come to your door and arrest you. They confiscate your computer and phones, and they beat you up a bit. No one can help you so they all just sit quietly. They know if they say anything they're next. This happened in the country I live in. It is not a joke.

3) Its hard to say how long you were in there. What you saw was horrible. Most of the time, you only heard screams. People begging to be killed. Noises you've never heard before. You, you were lucky. You got kicked every day when they threw your moldy food at you, but no one shocked you. No one used sexual violence on you, at least that you remember. There were some times they gave you pills, and you can't say for sure what happened then. To be honest, sometimes the pills were the best part of your day, because at least then you didn't feel anything. You have scars on you from the way you were treated. You learn in prison that torture is now common. But everyone who uploads videos or pictures of this torture is labeled a leaker. Its considered a threat to national security. Pretty soon, a cut you got on your leg is looking really bad. You think it's infected. There were no doctors in prison, and it was so overcrowded, who knows what got in the cut. You go to the doctor, but he refuses to see you. He knows if he does the government can see the records that he treated you. Even you calling his office prompts a visit from the local police.

You decide to go home and see your parents. Maybe they can help. This leg is getting really bad. You get to their house. They aren't home. You can't reach them no matter how hard you try. A neighbor pulls you aside, and he quickly tells you they were arrested three weeks ago and haven't been seen since. You vaguely remember mentioning to them on the phone you were going to that protest. Even your little brother isn't there.

4) Is this even really happening? You look at the news. Sports scores. Celebrity news. It's like nothing is wrong. What the hell is going on? A stranger smirks at you reading the paper. You lose it. You shout at him "**** you dude what are you laughing at can't you see I've got a ****ing wound on my leg?"

"Sorry," he says. "I just didn't know anyone read the news anymore." There haven't been any real journalists for months. They're all in jail.

Everyone walking around is scared. They can't talk to anyone else because they don't know who is reporting for the government. Hell, at one time YOU were reporting for the government. Maybe they just want their kid to get through school. Maybe they want to keep their job. Maybe they're sick and want to be able to visit the doctor. It's always a simple reason. Good people always do bad things for simple reasons.

You want to protest. You want your family back. You need help for your leg. This is way beyond anything you ever wanted. It started because you just wanted to see fair treatment in farms. Now you're basically considered a terrorist, and everyone around you might be reporting on you. You definitely can't use a phone or email. You can't get a job. You can't even trust people face to face anymore. On every corner, there are people with guns. They are as scared as you are. They just don't want to lose their jobs. They don't want to be labeled as traitors.

This all happened in the country where I live.

You want to know why revolutions happen? Because little by little by little things get worse and worse. But this thing that is happening now is big. This is the key ingredient. This allows them to know everything they need to know to accomplish the above. The fact that they are doing it is proof that they are the sort of people who might use it in the way I described. In the country I live in, they also claimed it was for the safety of the people. Same in Soviet Russia. Same in East Germany. In fact, that is always the excuse that is used to surveil everyone. But it has never ONCE proven to be the reality.

Maybe Obama won't do it. Maybe the next guy won't, or the one after him. Maybe this story isn't about you. Maybe it happens 10 or 20 years from now, when a big war is happening, or after another big attack. Maybe it's about your daughter or your son. We just don't know yet. But what we do know is that right now, in this moment we have a choice. Are we okay with this, or not? Do we want this power to exist, or not?

You know for me, the reason I'm upset is that I grew up in school saying the pledge of allegiance. I was taught that the United States meant "liberty and justice for all." You get older, you learn that in this country we define that phrase based on the constitution. That's what tells us what liberty is and what justice is. Well, the government just violated that ideal. So if they aren't standing for liberty and justice anymore, what are they standing for? Safety?

Ask yourself a question. In the story I told above, does anyone sound safe?

I didn't make anything up. These things happened to people I know. We used to think it couldn't happen in America. But guess what? It's starting to happen.

I actually get really upset when people say "I don't have anything to hide. Let them read everything." People saying that have no idea what they are bringing down on their own heads. They are naive, and we need to listen to people in other countries who are clearly telling us that this is a horrible horrible sign and it is time to stand up and say no.


http://www.reddit.com/r/changemyview/comments/1fv4r6/i_believe_the_government_should_be_allowed_to/caeb3pl

If you're not doing anything wrong, you have nothing to hide, right?

I hope every American in here has been in touch with their representatives and told them that it is unacceptable for this to continue. This doesn't just affect you. The internet is global, and even if you have some farcical protection under the 4th amendment, the NSA has no obligation to respect the rights of foreign citizens.
Rhythm in Jump. Dancing Close to You.

Quote by element4433
Yeah. people, like Lemoninfluence, are hypocrites and should have all their opinions invalidated from here on out.
#9
I really dislike the whole "I have nothing to hide" angle people spout. It's horrendously short sighted. I'm sure they would be most unimpressed if I walked into their house and started opening their mail in front of them before raiding their drawers and cupboards.
#10
Dont care. If Ill want to bomb something,Ill be able to do it anyway-Boston,anyone?!


Its all being run by paranoid fascists and no way they'll stop.Been on since 50's,Internets just another playground for them.
#11
Quote by JackalUK
I really dislike the whole "I have nothing to hide" angle people spout. It's horrendously short sighted. I'm sure they would be most unimpressed if I walked into their house and started opening their mail in front of them before raiding their drawers and cupboards.

I was listening to a moron on the radio that was using the "nothing to hide" angle. This is a guy on a local station that had a rather public divorce after being caught cheating on his wife.
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#12
I've been listening to a lot of the reporting on this, primarily on the various NPR news shows I listen to.
The government position is this. They are NOT listening to all of our phone calls and reading all of our e-mails and everything else. They are, in fact, archiving phone "records". That is, the number called from, the number called to, how long the conversation was, and where the individuals were when the call was made.
If, and only if, a call originating in the US connects to a number that is on a known "watch list" of some sort (not described), the agency may then apply to the special (and secret) court for a warrant to conduct actual surveillance, wiretapping, or to listen to the conversation.

Problems.... This is what NSA and the intelligence community is saying. No one knows if it's true or not... It's all very secret.
No one knows what level of suspicion is necessary to apply for a wiretap warrant. It used to be "probable cause". The same legal standard used in civil courts.
But there are indications that the agencies are using "reasonable suspicion", which is undefined legally and can mean pretty much whatever the agency wants it to.

Also.... This program has been going on for some time. Started under Bush. The NSA has just built (and is continuing to build) a huge data-storage complex in Utah which can be tied into the telecommunications network full-time.
I suspect more details will come out. There is a lot of hue and cry about this.
However, the heads of the intelligence community are saying these programs are vitally necessary and have had many positive results.... All secret.

Let's say the hue and cry is so great it's all shut down. Then there's another 9/11. Everyone who's been screaming about surveillance will be screaming... "Why didn't you see this coming?"
#13
You all checked "I agree" on the user agreements. Third Party info sharing is something facebook has in their terms upon signup. It's also why they make you re-check every time they change it.
OBEY THE MIGHTY SHITKICKER
Last edited by JustRooster at Jun 10, 2013,
#14
Quote by Bikewer
Let's say the hue and cry is so great it's all shut down. Then there's another 9/11. Everyone who's been screaming about surveillance will be screaming... "Why didn't you see this coming?"

If another 9/11 happens, people will be outraged anyway. No matter what the circumstances. And even with all this surveillance, there's no guarantee that they'll be able to stop it. If someone hates you, they'll find a way to hurt you.

You have to ask whether it's worth giving up rights in order to protect against the prospect of a potential attack.

I left out the word 'terrorist' from that sentence, because it doesn't have to be a terrorist attack. Any sort of movement can at any moment be declared an attack, even if it's not particularly violent. McCarthy hunted down anyone pretty much anyone who showed vaguely communist tendencies. So it's not like it can't happen in a country like the US.

And this extends beyond the US. GCHQ has had access to the system since 2010. But British people aren't afforded protection under the 4th amendment, so there's no safeguards in place to stop any NSA staff member with access to PRISM from accessing any/all data about any British person and passing it on to GCHQ, or highlighting that person for GCHQ to look at.

There are so many potential loopholes that there's pretty much zero accountability.
Rhythm in Jump. Dancing Close to You.

Quote by element4433
Yeah. people, like Lemoninfluence, are hypocrites and should have all their opinions invalidated from here on out.
#15
Quote by Bikewer
Let's say the hue and cry is so great it's all shut down. Then there's another 9/11. Everyone who's been screaming about surveillance will be screaming... "Why didn't you see this coming?"

WWI was the war to end all wars. You're daft.
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Yup, a girl went up to me in my fursuit one time.

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I can fap to this. Keep going.