Archive for the ‘privacy’ Category

This video was created in response to a censorship law in Australia. It’s a terrific video, though, and all too applicable to the US. Please watch and pass it along.

Reposted with permission.

Eric S Raymond (aka ESR, one of the founders of the Open Source software movement and outspoken computer advocate) wrote a scathing letter to former Senator and current Chairman of the MPAA, Chris Dodd over his claim that “Hollywood is pro-technology and pro-Internet.”

ESR’s letter is worth a read, especially if you care about copyright, privacy and the long-term function of the Internet. Read it here. Google User

Very funny. Depressing, but funny.

The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse launched a new online complaint form to give consumers a better way to speak out about privacy concerns.

The PRC is a non-profit, consumer advocacy and education organization established in 1992 to:

  • Raise consumers’ awareness of how technology affects personal privacy.
  • Provide practical tips on privacy protection.
  • Respond to specific privacy-related complaints from consumers, and when appropriate, intercede on their behalf.
  • Advocate for consumers’ privacy rights in local, state, and federal public policy proceedings, including legislative testimony, regulatory agency hearings, task forces, and study commissions.

The PRC has done some outstanding work in the past and I’ve written about them before but they’ve always been hampered by the fact that most consumers suffer in silence. When they don’t get data about privacy abuses, they can’t act to fix them.

The new online form should make it easier for customers to report infractions, bad corporate policies and other privacy problems. If you have a privacy concern, please don’t hesitate to report it and please give the PRC permission to include your complaint in their reports to the media and/or to the Federal Trade Commission.

I seem to be thinking about privacy as much as security lately. Unfortunately, much of that privacy is from our own government. The Fourth Amendment protects us from unreasonable government searches and seizures but there’s a great deal of confusion about what that means in the context of your computer, cell phone, iPad, thumbdrives, etc.

The Electronic Freedom Foundation published a short quiz (10 questions) to test how much you really know about the Fourth Amendment. I strongly recommend it. Even if you think you will never be pulled over or served with a warrant, you have a responsibility to be an informed citizen.