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Details On Worldwide Surveillance and Filtering

samzenpus posted about 5 years ago | from the eyes-eyes-eveywhere dept.

Censorship 125

An anonymous reader writes "Help Net Security is running an interview with Rafal Rohozinski, a founder and principal investigator of the OpenNet Initiative, which investigates, exposes and analyzes Internet filtering and surveillance practices all over the world. Rafal provides insight on the process of assessing the state of surveillance and filtering in a particular country and discusses differences related to these issues in several regions, touching especially the United States and Europe. In the US, censorship is more difficult to implement if for no other reason than the court systems offer greater protections for freedom of speech. However, in both places surveillance is on the rise particularly as law-enforcement agencies become more adept at working in the cyber domain."

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Just Remember. (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 5 years ago | (#29676131)

When we do it, it's to protect the children from porn and terrorism. When the godless commies do it, it's just plain evil.

Re:Just Remember. (3, Insightful)

NoYob (1630681) | about 5 years ago | (#29676155)

When we do it, it's to protect the children from porn and terrorism.

You forgot pedophiles! The internet is filled with old creepy men who want to have sex with young girls and boys! I saw it on the news!

Re:Just Remember. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676223)

Really? I thought those was US congressmen!

Shennanigans in the cloakroom, Shennanigans in the bathroom, Shennanigans on the internet just seems logical!

They want the cameras so they can spy on us naked! Those pervs!

Re:Just Remember. (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | about 5 years ago | (#29677243)

They want the cameras so they can spy on us naked! Those pervs!

That's right! There's noth8ing worse than naked pervs sitting in front of their computers watching surveillance tapes.

Re:Just Remember. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29677363)

Really? I thought those was US congressmen!

no, no one wants to have sex with congressmen.

Re:Just Remember. (2, Funny)

DigiShaman (671371) | about 5 years ago | (#29677409)

no, no one wants to have sex with congressmen.

That's because they already fuck us over. Why would we want to go through that again?

Re:Just Remember. (1)

Dan541 (1032000) | about 5 years ago | (#29679147)

Unless they are dressed like Santa.

Re:Just Remember. (1)

WizzardX (1048000) | about 5 years ago | (#29677377)

Clearly we need a Shenanigans Handler [thedailywtf.com]

Re:Just Remember. (1)

siloko (1133863) | about 5 years ago | (#29679153)

well in europe we are one step ahead - Paedophiles and politicians are the same thing [bbc.co.uk]

Re:Just Remember. (3, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 5 years ago | (#29676349)

Well, that is actually true [vatican.va] ...

Re:Just Remember. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676543)

Hopefully the next time they talk to Jesus, he tells them to stop using table-based layouts. It's just unchristian.

I am Jesus (2, Insightful)

TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) | about 5 years ago | (#29676801)

and I command you to stop using table-based layouts!

Hey, if you can't disprove it, it must be true!

Re:I am Jesus (1)

AmberBlackCat (829689) | about 5 years ago | (#29677289)

It's no better to say "if you can't prove it, it must be false".

Re:I am Jesus (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 5 years ago | (#29677537)

Given the approximate truth/falsity ratio of the set of all statements, "If you can't prove it, it must be false" is one hell of an improvement.

Better still, of course, is some fully developed framework for provisional inference from limited information; but that takes actual effort.

Re:I am Jesus (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29677847)

If our ancestors stuck to "If you can't prove it, it must be false" they'd have died out a long time ago.

There were lots of "true enough" important beliefs that they could not possibly prove scientifically at that time.

So they've been using "adhoc frameworks for provisional inference from limited information" instead.

e.g. Winter comes every X moons, and is likely to come again, we better store up food for it.

Re:I am Jesus (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29680123)

>>>Winter comes every X moons, and is likely to come again, we better store up food for

Actually that was a provable theory. Observe; record; notice a pattern; predict winter will arrive in a repeating cycle. That's primitive science.

Re:I am Jesus (1)

TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) | about 5 years ago | (#29678349)

It's actually much better to say that "if you can't prove it, it must be false". Better still, "if you can't prove it, then for all intents and purposes, it's false".

Out of a universe (or beyond!) with unfathomable possibility, it's much, much easier and much, much more reliable to live by confirming truths than eliminating falsehoods.

And besides, how exactly can we eliminate Jesus as a falsehood?

Re:I am Jesus (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29680087)

>>>It's no better to say "if you can't prove it, it must be false".

Actually the way that scientific and logical inquiry works, the saying would be, "If you can't prove it, there's a possibility it might still be true, but until that happens it will be ignored." For example the theory that flies spontaneously generate from meat. There's a still a possibility that is true, but it's never been proven, so that theory has fallen to the wayside.

Plus it's been replaced by a much better theory (flies lay eggs; eggs hatch new flies).

Re:Just Remember. (1)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | about 5 years ago | (#29678515)

One of the fastest loading big-name websites I've seen in a while... Nothing wrong with tables as far as I'm concerned.

Might be a little Web1.0, but at least they render correctly across all platforms.

Re:Just Remember. (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676355)

The chans are filled with old creepy men who want to have sex with young girls and boys!
Fixed... no charge.

Re:Just Remember. (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | about 5 years ago | (#29680169)

The chans are filled with creepy men who want to have sex

Your fixed, has been fixed.

Re:Just Remember. (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 5 years ago | (#29676381)

Yeah but it is easy to spot them, because they all wear light colored jeans, a hooded sweatshirt, a baseball cap with the hood over it, sunglasses, and drive around in a white van!

Re:Just Remember. (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 5 years ago | (#29676533)

phew.. For a minute there, I thought I was in trouble or something. Thank god my van is blue.

I'm not a pedophile but I was thinking I just got labeled as one when I shovel the snow in the winter time or go hunting from my blind.

Re:Just Remember. (1)

tcopeland (32225) | about 5 years ago | (#29676685)

> Thank god my van is blue.

I refer you to suspiciousvans.com [suspiciousvans.com] . As the first image says, "Free Candy!"

Re:Just Remember. (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 5 years ago | (#29676857)

I had a good laugh at that site. Some of those vans make you wonder though.

My van isn't pictured there so I guess I'm good. Mine looks a lot like this one [kingsusedkars.com] except it has a sliding door on the side and a TV antenna in the shape of a V on the top of the cab portion in front of the two front windows of the raised portion. Oh and my van is blue and gold, the guy who owned it before me was a West Virginia football fan and had it custom painted for that reason.

Re:Just Remember. (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 5 years ago | (#29676897)

Not a creepy enough van. A creepy van is usually a single, solid color, with no decoration and few windows. Some rust is usually present. The color white is preferred, although other colors are possible. The back should contain random boxes of junk and something to tie a rope to, and room for at least one adult and one child.

Re:Just Remember. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29677143)

phew.. For a minute there, I thought I was in trouble or something. Thank god my van is blue.

You do realize you just confessed to wearing light colored jeans, a hooded sweatshirt, a baseball cap with the hood over it and sunglasses? In public no less!

You know, if I were a profiler, with all that it would be enough for me that it's a van. At least tell me the van hasn't got tinted windows?

Re:Just Remember. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29677929)

There are legitimate reasons to dress like that. If you ever needed to shovel snow, you will know that a regular winter coat will cause you to get too warm and start sweating so you put on a sweatshirt and a hoody. The ball cap stop snow from falling into your face and the glasses tames the bright sunlight reflecting off the snow. The light colored jeans are just faded blue jeans that you use for working around the house so you do not ruin a good pair.

When hunting, it's sort of the same. You sit in a camouflaged blind, you have a ball cap on to break up your face, you wear a veil around it that you can see through, place some high contrast polarized shooting glasses (looks just like sun glasses) on to take the glare off and protect your eyes, and bundle up in a camouflaged hoody to keep the bugs and wind off your neck.

And yes, the rear windows in the van are tinted. That's pretty much standard for conversion vans. I guess if you were a profiler, you would be able to adjust the location and use of the dressing and consider it's usage as apposed to someone looking like that on a summer day in the middle of LA or NYC. BTW, I believe a lot of photos of the Uni-bomber looked like that except he didn't have a van.

Re:Just Remember. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29678071)

There are legitimate reasons to dress like that...

Dude, that was all meant to be humorous. Please don't feel like you need to defend your choice of clothing. You're fine wearing light colored jeans even when you aren't shoveling snow.

And yes, the rear windows in the van are tinted.

I already knew your van had tinted windows, that's why I asked. You see I am a profiler. ;)

Nice job going for the cheap +5 (1, Insightful)

Savior_on_a_Stick (971781) | about 5 years ago | (#29676629)

...knowing that most slash dotters are consumed with rabid anti-us sentiments, and don't have the attention span to read more than a one-liner.

The reality isn't what you imply.

The US has taken a few steps backward since 9-11 - but it still has greater protections over free expression than any other country of which I am aware.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (5, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 5 years ago | (#29676647)

It has those protections because people are so sensitive about those backward steps. Once people stop caring so much (which may have already happened with most people), those freedoms will be eroded.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676665)

>> The US has taken a few steps backward since 9-11 - but it still has greater protections over free expression than any other country of which I am aware.

You must not be aware of at least six other countries then, since the US ranked 7th over-all in the 2006 State of World Liberty Index (www.stateofworldliberty.org), and one should reasonably doubt the USA has moved up the scale since.

nor a credible citation (4, Insightful)

Savior_on_a_Stick (971781) | about 5 years ago | (#29676883)

"The State of World Liberty Project was founded in 2006 by Nick Wilson, an activist and co-founder of the Libertarian Reform Caucus, an organization working to turn the United States Libertarian Party into a viable political party."

Their compiled list is nonsensical at best, and relies primarily on nebulous ratings of "economic freedom" from well known right wing political groups - like the Heritage Foundation.

Also note, that if you discount the economic figures, the top dozen or so countries are scored closely enough to lack any statistical significance.

And the economic figures are all based on taxation - since libertarians have never met a tax they liked.

Further - without being intimately familiar with the culture of each country, I could not honestly evaluate them - and it's glaringly obvious that no effort was made to do so on the site you are promoting.

So in summary, you're flinging out weak, biased data to support a conclusion you've reached without making any reasonable effort to ascertain the actual facts.

I still remain unaware of any specific country with greater overall freedom than the US.

Nothing you've posted could rationally be expected to alter that fact.

Re:nor a credible citation (3, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | about 5 years ago | (#29677317)

Tell it to the Dixie Chicks.

Of course, now you're going to say that it wasnt the *government* which tried to censor them, it was just people who didn't like what they had to say. Sigh. A nation that turns to censorship every time someone says something they don't like is destined to become a police state.

Re:nor a credible citation (1)

icebike (68054) | about 5 years ago | (#29677491)

Since when were the Dixi Chicks censored?

Last I saw they were still getting gigs in liberal haunts all over the world, and even on American TV.

True, truck drivers might be tempted to launch a beer bottle over their heads should the mistakenly take a gig in some locales, but that hardly counts as censorship, just an opinion. More likely, the bar owner would cancel the gig for lack of an audience.

We could of course expect everyone to continue to pay admission, and sit quietly and listen politely to people they don't like, singing songs that make them angry. That's how its done in the rest of the world, I' sure.

Re:nor a credible citation (0)

QuantumG (50515) | about 5 years ago | (#29677937)

Short memories. There was a time when the Dixie Chicks were barred from radio, television, etc. They made their own movie instead, and stores wouldn't stock it. So now that you've had a refresher course of recent history, maybe you'd like to think about what I said. If it was a government that was doing this you'd say it must be communist China. No way would the US Government ban someone from the airwaves for having a political opinion. And you'd be right, it wasn't a government action. However, the people of the US are quite willing to "shut up" those who say things they don't like. The censorial actions of these network affiliated scumbags is perfectly acceptable behavior in your fine land of the free. Apparently when they hear something they don't like your fellow countrymen no longer think people should be free to speak.

And that's how you get governments that think the same. Of the people, by the people and for the people.

Re:nor a credible citation (2, Insightful)

icebike (68054) | about 5 years ago | (#29677999)

Ok, I see your point. We don't run out and buy the records of people we don't like, we don't go to their movies so that's censorship?

You sir are a raving loon!

Re:nor a credible citation (2, Informative)

QuantumG (50515) | about 5 years ago | (#29678117)

Wow.. either you're incredibly naive or you're just a trolling idiot. The point is not that people who disagreed with the Dixie Chicks refused to buy their records.. that's exactly what George W. Bush said and why everyone with a clue hung their head in shame. The point is, people who *agreed* with the Dixie Chicks were unable to buy their records or their movies or hear them on the radio or see them on tv, because the people who disagreed had arranged for them to be banned. Surely you remember all this? It really wasn't that long ago.

Re:nor a credible citation (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29680389)

What you're basically saying is that the Dixie Chicks were censored by the *secondary* level of government which we commonly call "the corporations". Because the corporations hold so much power, they have the ability to make a music group disappear from American life, simply by refusing to stock their CDs.

We now see a similar thing happening with Glenn Beck, where the corporations are trying to yank him off the air. They hold enough power that they are virtually another level of government, and I would not be surprised if they succeeded.

Re:nor a credible citation (1)

Neoprofin (871029) | about 5 years ago | (#29679005)

If U2s next album was an ode to pederasty and the rise of the Fourth Riech I doubt that Best Buy would stock it, but there's absolutely nothing stoping them or groups that profess cold blooded murder, drug abuse, overflowing the government, or just about anything else for that matter from producing and distributing their thoughts. Unpopularity is not censorship, and an artists right to say whatever they want does not trump the right of anyone else to say exactly what they think with their wallets.

Re:nor a credible citation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29679333)

They were perfectly free to speak however they wanted just no one wanted to listen. Free speech just allows you to say what you want it doesn't guarantee you an audience to listen to you.

Re:nor a credible citation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29677853)

Switzerland.

Re:nor a credible citation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29678507)

The Netherlands ?

Re:nor a credible citation (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29680259)

>>>And the economic figures are all based on taxation - since libertarians have never met a tax they liked.

Not true. They like "use taxes" where you pay for a service when you use it. They cite the road/gasoline toll and the stamp tax as near-ideal forms of taxation. You use the service - you pay. You don't use the service - you don't pay. They consider that fair and reasonable.

And while some libertarians are almost anarchist in their views, they are still saner than those on the extreme-left who think they are entitled to sit on their asses all day, not do an hour of work, and raid their neighbors' wallets for cash, food stamps, or other freebie services. Now THAT'S radical. I don't think I'm entitled to buy myself a Civic and pass the bill to my neighors..... and yet these nutjobs on the left think that would be okay ("a car is a necessity of life").

(shaking head)

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (1)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | about 5 years ago | (#29676677)

I take it you haven't visited Canada or Sweden in this millennium?

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (4, Informative)

Savior_on_a_Stick (971781) | about 5 years ago | (#29676749)

Both Canada and Sweden have significant restrictions on what can be said in public.
They do this is the guise of protecting against "hate speech."

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (4, Interesting)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | about 5 years ago | (#29676805)

As opposed to the complete joke that is FOIA in the US, and the Patriot Act? The various porn regulations in the US, capriciously decided on a state-by-state basis? The DMCA? Software patents? Disney and the insanely extendend copyright laws? The very strange regulations in the US about publication of encryption technologies? "Hate speech" is an understandable concern both for crime prevention, and for free speech reasons. But in my opinion as an outsider, both Canada and Sweden are noticeably better about it.

For US citizens, the McCarthy era is still in living memory, for some of us. So are the 1960's and their repression of anti-Vietnam speech. I like to think we've progressed, and the Internet is very useful for getting around the current round of restrictions. But make no mistake, they still happen, sometimes in new guises.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (3, Interesting)

sumdumass (711423) | about 5 years ago | (#29677319)

Wow, I can't believe you got modded up for that snibbling rant. All you did was criticize some programs way out of context as if you didn't understand them and bark about something that happened, was ended, and everyone agrees should never happen again.

The 60's are over, we have all moved on and no one things they should return. McCarthyism is long dead and will not resurrect in out lifetime and it's pointless to drag out FOIA, DMCA, Software patents and so on. The DMCA and Software patents do not limit speech, they limit what you can do with other people's speech. The FIOA is just rubbish, it's more then most countries have. And the Anti-Vietnam war speech often consisted of quite a bit of inflammatory speech and acts that provoked the other side. I mean calling soldiers baby killers, spitting in their faces, throwing pigs blood on them when they return, getting doped out of their mind and ignoring the fact that 90% of the soldiers were compelled by law to server their country during the war time. This doesn't even begin to mention the bombings by the anti war groups, the YAF who promoted anarchy and wondered why the man came down on them after they broke a dozen laws or the riots they created across the country like the big one in Detroit. Hell, a lot of the protesters provoked the other side just to get headlines when they broke and retaliated.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (4, Insightful)

slashqwerty (1099091) | about 5 years ago | (#29677459)

McCarthyism is long dead and will not resurrect in out lifetime

Perhaps not in the form of protecting us from communists but it will undoubtedly come back in one form or another. With complacency like yours it will come back even quicker.

The DMCA and Software patents do not limit speech

The DMCA makes it illegal to publish an entirely open source DVD player. It effectively grants a limitless patent to the DVD CCA which controls who can make a DVD player and under what conditions. Software patents limit my ability to publish ideas I developed on my own having never heard of an obvious submarine patent that will bar me from publishing my software.

Hell, a lot of the protesters provoked the other side just to get headlines when they broke and retaliated.

What makes you so sure the protesters did that? COINTELPRO was an FBI program in which agents infiltrated protest groups and started riots to make the group look bad, and to give the authorities an excuse to interfere with the group's free-speech rights.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (0, Troll)

sumdumass (711423) | about 5 years ago | (#29677883)

Perhaps not in the form of protecting us from communists but it will undoubtedly come back in one form or another. With complacency like yours it will come back even quicker.

Not at all. There has been ample opportunity for it since then and it didn't happen. Stop being afraid of the dark. Keep your eyes open so you do not trip over something but quit being afraid.

The DMCA makes it illegal to publish an entirely open source DVD player. It effectively grants a limitless patent to the DVD CCA which controls who can make a DVD player and under what conditions. Software patents limit my ability to publish ideas I developed on my own having never heard of an obvious submarine patent that will bar me from publishing my software.

No it does not. The DMCA prevents you from publishing an entirely open source DVD player that uses other people's technology. You can make an open source player that plays DVDs that does not use their encryption. It won't play commercial DVDs until they start using the open scheme but that's not my problem. Also, software patents do no stop you from publishing your ideas. They stop you from publishing other people's ideas. I don't agree with them, but your acting like you are the one who developed the tech which is patented and your not otherwise a software patent would be a non-issue for you. And yes, I have heard of submarine patents. Those are problems with standards boards more so then with patents in and of themselves. But they do not stop you from publishing your software, they stop you from creating and publishing software using their patented technology. In short, everything you just complained about revolves around you not thinking it's fair that you can't take someone elses ideas and products and copy them.

What makes you so sure the protesters did that? COINTELPRO was an FBI program in which agents infiltrated protest groups and started riots to make the group look bad, and to give the authorities an excuse to interfere with the group's free-speech rights.

In video footage of protests, it's clearly the entirety of the protesters not just some agents. Even if agents were instigating the violence, the rest of the crowd was happily joining in. If you help rob a bank because a FBI agent starts doing it, you are no less of a bank robber then if you had taken the actions entirely on your own. If you haven't watched the footage were in the middle of it then I'm not sure why you feel competent enough to talk about it. Christ, it's only some of the most documented times in the recent history of the US. And if you were part of it or seen the footage, then you wouldn't have made the statement you did.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29678149)

> In short, everything you just complained about revolves around you not thinking it's fair that you can't take someone elses ideas and products and copy them.

That couldn't be more wrong. Copying their ideas would mean copying their source code. He doesn't have access to that.
All he wants to do is implement HIS OWN ideas. But because somebody else may have had that idea before him (without his knowledge) he isn't allowed to use his own ideas. In a country that justifies software patents with the right of the creator on his own ideas this whole system is highly hypocritical.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 5 years ago | (#29679805)

Listen, the right or wrong of software patents or copyright aside, the only thing he is refrained from here is the involvement of ideas and technology originating with other people. It's not a matter solely of his own ideas so do not pretend otherwise. And claiming to want to implement a completely open source DVD player when the DVD standard is someone else idea as well as his wanting to implement it directly is nothing but indicative of that concept. If anything is hypocritical, it would be ignoring that very fact in order to pretend a different scenario is unfolding.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (1)

Omestes (471991) | about 5 years ago | (#29678405)

McCarthyism is long dead and will not resurrect in out lifetime

Watch the news, and count the times that someone dismisses a purely political idea as "socialism", or how often people argue that our duly elected officials are "socialists". It might not be policy, but the sentiment is still there.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 5 years ago | (#29679855)

Disagreement in ideology is not McCarthyism. I suggest you spend a little more time understanding what McCarthyism actually is/was. I'll give you a hint, it's government sponsored or pressured and not the free expression of ideologues by idiots. The fact that people are elected while being called socialist or that ideas from elected officials can be called socialist is living proof that McCarthyism is long dead.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (1)

Omestes (471991) | about 5 years ago | (#29678395)

the McCarthy era is still in living memory

Wait... isn't that making a come-back? It seems a large percentage of people in America today (at least the vocal ones) would like McCarthy to be raised from the grave as a big bad Obama/50+% of the population smashing zombie. Hence tons of people bashing "socialism" as an evil thing, and not just a mere political view different than their own, not to say liberalism (more "socialism"), secularism (the first amendment is socialism), and the typo-become-slander "democrat" party (those legally elected "socialists").

So are the 1960's and their repression of anti-Vietnam speech.

As was the early 2000's anti-Iraq speech. I remember when being against our president, or his purely political war was considered to be Anti-American. I remember stories of critics being put on no-fly lists, and other watch lists. How times have changed.

Granted most of these aren't actually political edicts enforced from on-high, but they show the sentiment is still very alive. So we still have a VERY steep slope, since a large-ish population of the US would like wholesale censorship and political repression.

I'm not sure the extent of anything though, since our government is a sneeky bunch of spies still, who are still very likely to be closely monitoring any potential opposition to the dominant ideology. And it is ignoring the Judicial Branch, who frequently decides that our freedoms are subject to corporate whims (soft fascism, as someone here on /. eruditely put it earlier). This doubt also incorporates our copyright and patent fiascoes that are on-going. It is increasingly hard to draw a media/corporation/government line when it comes to rights violations.

Obviously, I'm not disagreeing with you, just adding some more steam to the boiler.

Footnote: I made my post a bit antagonistic to Republicans, and the previously ascendant Conservatives, Democrats and Liberals, though, are not free from guilt either. The current Obama health care issue is a good example of Moderate Liberal Status-Quo-ers trying to quench debate.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (2, Interesting)

jhol13 (1087781) | about 5 years ago | (#29677083)

Swedish army (FRA) is snooping practically every packet going out of Finland.

BTW, Slahsdot does not have ssl connection ...

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 5 years ago | (#29676759)

You should be careful to distinguish between "rabid anti-us sentiments" and "expressions of displeasure when the US implementation fails to match up to the US ideal". There are a few vague, surface level, similarities; but the difference counts.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (1)

Killjoy_NL (719667) | about 5 years ago | (#29679109)

Try and teach Fox that :(

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (2, Insightful)

TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) | about 5 years ago | (#29676817)

It's interesting that you perceive the parent post as an attack on your country, not on a general mentality.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29678531)

The US has taken a few steps backward since 9-11 - but it still has greater protections over free expression than any other country of which I am aware.

Then you are totally oblivious. There are many countries that has greater protections over free expression than USA. What annoy us most is that US try too force their brand of censorship down our throats.

There were also a lot of countries that had greater levels of free expression than US even before 9-11 (I assume you mean that small terrorist attack on World Trade Center, not the greater acts of terrorism in 1973 (only a small number of people killed that date, but more then 40.000 random civilians was held as hostage that day and tens of thousands was tortured and killed in the terror that followed) or 1982 (more then 3000 civilian refugees slaughtered), which also led to increased censorship within USA, especially since US supported the aggressors). Some of those countries has since then lost some of the legal protection of free expression, BECAUSE of threats from US about what would happen if they didn't.

From the top of my head: Norway, Sweden, Netherlands, France (yeah, really), Switzerland. None of those countries is perfect regarding free expression, but they sure as hell is better then USA.There are probably a lot of countries outside Northern Europe too, but as an Northern European I'm totally oblivious too those, just as an USArian is oblivious to everything outside USA ;)

Then there is also the small obstacle of making yourself heard. Many countries just don't protect free expression, they also try actively too create equal opportunities for all those different opinions too get heard.

Re:Nice job going for the cheap +5 (3, Insightful)

Teun (17872) | about 5 years ago | (#29678579)

The US might not be the worst of surveillance nations compared to the amount and depth of surveillance in some other places.

But I find the US none the less more scary for the ways they back up this surveillance.

As a single example, can you name a single western style democratic country where the government can legally set up and maintain something like Gitmo?

And the lack of recourse, for example no or hardly no limits on the retention of data or (well communicated) ways to be informed about what agencies store about you and how to appeal.

Or the way pieces of sensitive legislation are sneaked through by tacking it to big non related bills.

Don't get me wrong, I really like many aspects of the US but when it comes to perceived security risks it's still exhibiting 'Old West' policies of 'shoot first, talk later'.

Re:Just Remember. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29678241)

How the hell has this post been modded +5 Insightful??? +5 Funny or +5 Yeah Right would be more appropriate...

Oblig XKCD (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676141)

Oblig XKCD [xkcd.com]

Now and then, I announce "I know you're listening" to empty rooms.

If I'm wrong, no one knows. And If I'm right, maybe I just freaked the hell out of some secret organization.

Re:Oblig XKCD (2, Funny)

QuantumG (50515) | about 5 years ago | (#29676411)

http://xkcd.com/538/ [xkcd.com]

I think that's more appropriate.

Re:Oblig XKCD (1)

Nadaka (224565) | about 5 years ago | (#29676595)

That wrench probably cost at least $50

Re:Oblig XKCD (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 5 years ago | (#29677135)

Who knows, maybe if times get really tough the CIA will have to start shopping at Harbor Freight...

Re:Oblig XKCD (2, Informative)

lysergic.acid (845423) | about 5 years ago | (#29677895)

That's a funny strip, but it doesn't really apply to mass surveillance/filtering. It's actually a lot cheaper to build a (multi-) million-dollar supercomputer to filter/analyze day to day internet traffic than to actually send goons out with $5 wrenches to beat the information out of hundreds of millions of people (on a daily basis).

Re:Oblig XKCD (1)

dkf (304284) | about 5 years ago | (#29679435)

It's actually a lot cheaper to build a (multi-) million-dollar supercomputer to filter/analyze day to day internet traffic than to actually send goons out with $5 wrenches to beat the information out of hundreds of millions of people (on a daily basis).

They mostly do traffic analysis, watching not what you're saying but where you're saying it and who you're saying it to, and such things are much harder to defeat (TOR is immediately suspicious, and apparently fairly easy to watch in practice). They only send the goons out when they really want to decrypt a message, and by that point they're probably doing a lot of physical surveillance too.

Tor, email anonymizers and encryption (4, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 5 years ago | (#29676241)

The sad thing is, we can thwart these efforts, and we have been able to thwart these efforts for a long time. The majority of people, however, do not care as much about thwarting efforts at surveillance as they do about convenience. It is too inconvenient to carry a thumb drive with some software and crypto keys around*; the extra steps of inserting that device into a computer and running the software on it is more than most people are willing to deal with.

* Yes I know that this is not as secure as keeping your crypto keys on your own hardware, but it goes a hell of a lot further than any current methods do, and would require a lot of resources on the part of the government to break across the board (e.g. a targeted attack would work, but if they are going to the effort of targeting an individual they are going to break the crypto anyway, perhaps using the drugs+wrench method).

Re:Tor, email anonymizers and encryption (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676369)

> The majority of people, however, do not care as much about thwarting efforts at surveillance as they do about convenience

That, or they just don't know or understand the issues. To most people, computers are magic.

But yeah, I agree with your basic point. We already have the ability to make this a non-issue, and we're not doing it.

Re:Tor, email anonymizers and encryption (3, Insightful)

NoYob (1630681) | about 5 years ago | (#29676489)

I think as far as the surveillance thing goes it's a non-issue to many people: something that paranoid people worry about or "if you do nothing wrong you have nothing to worry about mentality"

Even then, convenience, as the parent mentioned, is a huge factor. How many of you set up user accounts on family member's machines, telling them "Do not surf the net or do anything else with the admin account EXCEPT install software YOU choose or other administrative functions!" only to have them use the admin account anyway and catch one of those malware programs that installs behind the scenes - all because there's an app, and there's always at least one fucking app that cannot run unless it's run by an admin account!? (I'm looking at you Kodak!)

Re:Tor, email anonymizers and encryption (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676755)

Setup an admin account that THEY can't access. A bit more annoying, but once they have all the programs they need installed and running, it's less trouble.

Fucking app won't run if it's not an admin account? Then don't install it.

Re:Tor, email anonymizers and encryption (4, Insightful)

Sloppy (14984) | about 5 years ago | (#29676739)

To most people, computers are magic.

And that's why unauthenticated encryption should be the default, for everything (email, web, etc). That's something people can do without understanding anything, and frustrates surveillance immensely, even if it doesn't rigorously prevent it. And then, if they care and can learn, they can securely exchange keys to get authenticated encryption.

Sure, the masses would be MitM vulnerable, but right now they're even worse off, and can be effortlessly sniffed.

Shame on the FF3 team.

Re:Tor, email anonymizers and encryption (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 5 years ago | (#29676763)

Which is why OTR is so cool. It gives a discrete warning about being unauthenticated, and it integrates seamlessly with IM. Unfortunately, even OTR is too inconvenient for most people I have met, and they fail to understand why there is any benefit to using something that is not as "pretty" as the default AIM client (thank you AOL for screwing that one up for us).

Re:Tor, email anonymizers and encryption (1, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | about 5 years ago | (#29678019)

Sure, the masses would be MitM vulnerable, but right now they're even worse off, and can be effortlessly sniffed.

Wow, I must be incredibly uninformed about what is possible with unauthenticated encryption.. please, tell us how to do unauthenticated encryption that requires a MitM attack rather than just passive sniffing to defeat.

Re:Tor, email anonymizers and encryption (1)

huge (52607) | about 5 years ago | (#29678977)

Diffie-Hellman [wikipedia.org] key exchange is considered to be secure against eavesdropping but vulnerable to MitM.

Re:Tor, email anonymizers and encryption (1)

maxume (22995) | about 5 years ago | (#29679167)

Could you throw out two or three sentences on how to passively sniff an unauthenticated https channel, I can't seem to wrap my head around how to do it?

Obligatory (1)

cmseagle (1195671) | about 5 years ago | (#29676427)

Re:Obligatory (2, Interesting)

daveb (4522) | about 5 years ago | (#29676453)

If you go to that link, mouse over the comic to see the ACTUAL actual reality of the situation http://xkcd.com/538/ [xkcd.com]

FAUUUUUUUCK (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676343)

IM SICK OF THIS SHIT!

Moving (2, Insightful)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 5 years ago | (#29676497)

Argh! This country and it's lack of privacy! Big government! I've had it with america! Land of the free indeed! I'm moving to europe!

How do the United States compare to Europe in regards to surveillance and filtering?

Certainly there seems to be more momentum these days towards regulation in Europe. This is prompted by concerns over child welfare and exploitation, and also the perceived danger from radical militant groups. Europe also tends to be more of a surveillance society, particularly the UK. In the US, censorship is more difficult to implement if for no other reason than the court systems offer greater protections for freedom of speech.

Wait... we're doing something right? Yes! WOO! AMERICA NUMBER ONE! LAND OF THE FREE!

[Making fun of myself here, I've often read articles on the sad state of privacy in the US and thought "I quit, totally moving at the next available opportunity." If I'm being honest, I would have to describe myself as a fairweather fan of the US.]

Re:Moving (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29679711)

living in europe, this already happened a couple of times for me.
I immediately wanted to leave, only didnt know where to go.

"They" don't give a damn about the law (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676539)

In the US, censorship is more difficult to implement if for no other reason than the court systems offer greater protections for freedom of speech.

In the US, there are big telecommunication carriers who illegally spy on American citizens, and they go scot-free. The law is a weak line of defense when the government colludes against it. When the "leaders" have set their minds on something, it's going to happen. Laws will be changed, circumvented and ignored. There must be a strong factual defense line. In the case of communication that's cryptography, privacy enhancing routing protocols, redundancy and networks in the hands of the people.

Unnecessary surveillance? (4, Informative)

AHuxley (892839) | about 5 years ago | (#29676553)

Its amazing how many state an federal police task forces just view web 2.0 sites.
Sit in chat rooms, forums and social networking sites trying to connect nerds and geeks in pics to real life.
The interesting part is the push for IP to home address without warrant in Canada and no court needed sneak and peek 'try before you raid' bureaucratic options.
My view is the deep fear of random flash mobs on any given topic. The more cops can just watch, the more they can build connections into protest groups.
The problem is they are still playing from the Stasi handbook.
If you have so many people willing to face jail, Iraq fresh "cops", baton charges, gassing, tasering, FIT units, Long Range Acoustic Device (L-RAD), no fly lists for life and military fusion state and federal databases, its too late ;)
If they want control back, do a cold war USA or West Germany.
Sedate the peasants with low wage jobs, cheap cars, short cheap holidays, cheap housing, free speech for all and the dream of a better life.
If they are chasing beads and mirrors all day, no need for tanks in the streets.

Re:Unnecessary surveillance? (1)

TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) | about 5 years ago | (#29676767)

Yes. Let us sedate the peasants by giving them what they want! We have discovered what's important to them and now we are giving it to them! Now we are in control, so long as we cater to their needs! How terribly EVIL of me! Mwhahahahaha!

Re:Unnecessary surveillance? (4, Interesting)

westlake (615356) | about 5 years ago | (#29676899)

Sit in chat rooms, forums and social networking sites trying to connect nerds and geeks in pics to real life.

There are times when I wonder if the chat room nerd has any anchorage in real life.

That is the danger: Caught in the web [theage.com.au] [Oct 1]

My view is the deep fear of random flash mobs on any given topic. The more cops can just watch, the more they can build connections into protest groups.

The geek as revolutionary is ripe for satire.

I'm not convinced he could draw a crowd if he were handing out free beer in Munich during the Oktoberfest. Free Software Foundation - Windows 7 Sins [youtube.com]

Sedate the peasants with low wage jobs, cheap cars, short cheap holidays, cheap housing, free speech for all and the dream of a better life. If they are chasing beads and mirrors all day, no need for tanks in the streets.

It's really quite easy to spot the losers in the American political game: Embittered, cynical, and with bottomless contempt for the masses.

Re:Unnecessary surveillance? (1)

andhar (194607) | about 5 years ago | (#29678137)

The 'Windows 7 Sins' stunt was pretty retarded, but the guy (I admit I don't know who he is, and what he's known for) in the interview afterwards is really articulate and makes a very good argument against proprietary software. No beard, no stink of geek, just a smart guy with a cause.

Maybe someone out there can edit out the giant garbage can?

Re:Unnecessary surveillance? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29679237)

It's really quite easy to spot the losers in the American political game: Embittered, cynical, and with bottomless contempt for the masses.

And equally easy to spot the winners: Embittered, cynical, and with a bottomless pit of lies for the masses.

Re:Unnecessary surveillance? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29679297)

In this game if you're not a winner, you're a loser bro.

So you figure yourself a winner?..

Re:Unnecessary surveillance? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29679555)

The geek as revolutionary is ripe for satire.

Yeah, true. It's a sad state of affairs, but it's true.

Except guy is not talking about geeks as revolutionaries. Normal people use these tools now. A cross-section of the total population uses these tools now. The power of monitoring them is much greater today than it was even a few years ago, as a result.

Embittered, cynical, and with bottomless contempt for the masses.

Those people are the winners in the capitalist system. They didn't get rich and powerful on the strength of their respect for the masses; they got rich and powerful by cynically exploiting them.

In Australia? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29676721)

I'm in Australia. How come I can't get the original article ?

Kudos to samzenpus for this one... (4, Interesting)

herojig (1625143) | about 5 years ago | (#29677097)

Now here is a /. that I could wrap my arms around: pointers to research, tools, and good news. The country I live in comes up no evidence of filtering whatsoever. The Psiphon open source so far only has a windows installer/instructions as far as I can tell, but I guess as a project this may grow into something we can all use for protection...hard to see it right now however...more testing needed.

Knowing What Not to Say. (4, Funny)

FurtiveGlancer (1274746) | about 5 years ago | (#29677137)

I judiciously avoid terms that will make my internet experience suspect for the key word scanners. Words like Keyhole, Echelon, Einstein might cause notice of your inputs so just be care{click, dial tone}

Re:Knowing What Not to Say. (1)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | about 5 years ago | (#29678553)

You're doing it wrong! It's Keyhole, Echelon, Einstein, and then you end wi(*&^BFCNO CARRIER

ah, the Internet... (4, Funny)

Tastecicles (1153671) | about 5 years ago | (#29677345)

...where men are women, women are men, and little girls are FBI agents running honeypots...

Frismt stop (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29677589)

is wiped off a8d Mr. Raymond's There are about 700 they are Come on FreeBSD because Lay down paper From the OpenBSD you're told. It's some of you have to its laid-back

How do you know? (2, Insightful)

GWRedDragon (1340961) | about 5 years ago | (#29677721)

How exactly does software expose government surveillance on an intermediate network you have no control over? How does anything?

The only way you know if someone is spying on your data is if someone goes public with it, and it seems pretty stupid to assume that those exposed cases are in any way representative of the actual state of spying.

South America (2, Interesting)

cenc (1310167) | about 5 years ago | (#29679373)

I don't see any discussion of South America. There is almost no serious Internet censorship in any of the countries. Most have higher political and economic priorities over trying to be thought police of their citizens. I suspect that most of the monitoring going on is really related to true national security issues, not simply trying to control and manipulate the populations.

About a week ago Chile tried to introduce a law in to congress that would require ISPs to monitor and cancel accounts of users for P2P content. It was shot down with only 1 vote in favor in congress. Try that in the U.S. or European countries? Even if it was not constitutional, you would still see some right-wing "save the children" type try vote for it in mass and not even bother reading it.

No info about America and Canada? What a joke. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29679657)

Apparently these folks have no relevant information about the United States or Canada. This after the PATRIOT ACT, Total Information Awareness, etc. I mean, nobody spies better than the USA, on its citizens and the rest of the world. By the looks of their little map, the project defines some other out there who censors, like Iran, and we over here that do not.

Their map is not complete. Both Canada and the United States have PROVEN selective censorship of "views in opposition to those of the current government, [...] related to human rights, freedom of expression, [and] minority rights." In the past decade vigilantes have pressured LEGAL resources of this type off the web because they were for boylovers. But these acts of censorship do not count. They do not appear in the annals of human rights organizations from which they obtain their data. I guess because boylovers are not human?

From the Interview:

"Banning some content, such as child pornography is of course legitimate. Other types of content, such as "terrorist content", is problematic as there is no proper legal definition and the term is open to broad interpretation."

I've said before that anti-pedophilia is more fundamental to the West than anti-terrorism, and this statement reinforces that view. Anti-pedophile censorship is viewed as "of course legitimate" while battling terrorist information is "problematic." This coming from the critic of filtering and online censorship. That different jurisdictions define child pornography in very different ways, that in some jurisdictions text, fiction, and art, and nudity is banned (see the latest censorship at the Tate museum). Even the term child pornography is question since child is defined as anyone under the age of 18. "Experts" have declared that we will be experiencing an "epidemic" of teen-made pornography using webcams. By my calculations, according to published numbers, about %15 of "child pornography" is self made webcam porn. Expect that number to rise as web connected cameras saturate our society. Why should this material be categorized with rape videos? That's just the beginning of the questions we might ask about the issue of "child pornography." The "of course" this professor treats himself to is ideological, not empirical. It sticks because nobody questions his lack of questioning.

But at least we know one thing: "of course" we're going to end up with an invasive system of Internet surveillance and censorship in the West. We don't even need to ask any questions about that. Great. This coming from the surveillance and filtering watchdog.

Nobody gives a damn about any of this because (a) railroading pedophiles into concentration camps sounds like a pretty darned good idea to many Americans, and (b) kids and teens are the targets of constant social control by their parents and schools; nobody owes kids a "normal" sex life. If 13 year olds like to cum, you just deny it, ignore it, hide it, censor it, speak out against it. And if someone is interested in watching, you prosecute it. "Of course."

From the interview:

"If we believe that openness really is a better path, then we have to make sure that we address the legitimate concerns of policy makers and law enforcement agencies by providing them with tools that are relevant to policing in the cyber domain without necessarily resorting to tactics that potentially lead to abuse - first and foremost censorship and unnecessary surveillance."

Translation: if you believe in openness, you have to support state directed censorship and surveillance, by another name. And the censorship and surveillance watchdog group will be the ones to provide the tools.

Now that's what I call interesting.

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