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Yahoo and Facebook Join Google In FISC Petition After Government Talks Fail

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the victory-in-secret-court-still-considered-failure dept.

The Courts 114

msm1267 writes "Google, Yahoo and Facebook filed amended requests today with the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court reiterating their desire to publish numbers on requests for user data related to national security. Google, meanwhile, went a step further asking for an open, public hearing with the court so that the issue could be publicly debated." Statements from Yahoo's general counsel (filed motion [PDF]) and Facebook's general counsel (filed motion [PDF]). According to Facebook, "In recent weeks, it has become clear that the dialogue with the U.S. government that produced some additional transparency at the outset is at this point unlikely to result in more progress. As a result, today we are joining others in the industry in petitioning the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to require the government to permit companies to disclose more information about the volume and types of national security-related orders they receive."

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Just realase the fucking info already (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44803617)

There's no constitutional or legal basis for them not releasing it. If any any NSA or lawyer human filth shows up and says otherwise a bullet in the head will fix it.

Problem solved.

Re:Just realase the fucking info already (4, Insightful)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | about a year ago | (#44804165)

How is this a troll? Rude and blunt, maybe, but they're right. There is no constitutional basis for not releasing the information.
A bullet might be a little bit overkill, but it depends on the threats that the "human filth" makes to Facebook/Yahoo/Google first, doesn't it?

Re:Just realase the fucking info already (2)

Falkentyne (760418) | about a year ago | (#44805033)

..A bullet might be a little bit overkill..

Actually, a bullet would be exactly kill. I've never heard of someone being 110% dead before.

Re:Just realase the fucking info already (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44805109)

Really a pointless article and PR attempt by these companies, considering they just gave the NSA and others what they wanted behind the public's backs anyway.
It is still laughable people want to support these companies. and blame everything on the NSA. The NSA is an evil empire, but the companies could have grown some hair on there balls and said something aloud to the public.

Re:Just realase the fucking info already (1)

ramdac (302865) | about a year ago | (#44806071)

you say that like you think they have a choice. They don't.

Re:Just realase the fucking info already (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44807653)

The choice is to say "fuck off" and release the info. Have some anonymous intern leak it for something for fucks sake. Or just call 911 if the NSA guy won't leave your property after you report him for trespassing. Or just shoot him in the head if your state has "stand your ground" and he won't leave and continues to threaten everyone.

Constitution ? What "constitution" ? (4, Insightful)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about a year ago | (#44804317)

There's no constitutional or legal basis for them not releasing it

I am afraid that we are living in a world where the CONSTITUTION ain't worth a shit to those in power.

To us, the powerless the CONSTITUTION still means something - because it serves as a shield against abuse.

But to those living and working inside Washington D.C., the CONSTITUTION is anything but a mere piece of paper, as for them, POWER IS EVERYTHING.

Their subjugation of their subjects (aka, people like you and me) did not start yesterday. It started DECADES AGO, it's only now that they have gained so much power that they have become SO EMBOLDEN that they dare to publicly dis-regard the Constitution and everything that was stated inside the Constitution.

Who is to blame for it ? Them in Washington, D.C., or us, the voters who voted them in, every fucking four years, without fail ?

Re:Constitution ? What "constitution" ? (0)

WCMI92 (592436) | about a year ago | (#44804627)

heir subjugation of their subjects (aka, people like you and me) did not start yesterday. It started DECADES AGO, it's only now that they have gained so much power that they have become SO EMBOLDEN that they dare to publicly dis-regard the Constitution and everything that was stated inside the Constitution.

Who is to blame for it ? Them in Washington, D.C., or us, the voters who voted them in, every fucking four years, without fail ?

The biggest need we have right now if we want to remain a free people is NOT the formation of a third party, at this point we DO NOT EVEN HAVE A SECOND PARTY!

NEITHER party opposes the transformation of this Republic into a tyrannical Regime with unlimited power and authority. The DemocRAT party orgasms whenever the name OBAMA!!! is uttered. The Republican party is led by a bunch of RINOS who's only meaningful difference with the Democrats is that they will lead us to bankruptcy and slavery a couple weeks later.

Re:Constitution ? What "constitution" ? (2)

redneckmother (1664119) | about a year ago | (#44804631)

There's no constitutional or legal basis for them not releasing it

I am afraid that we are living in a world where the CONSTITUTION ain't worth a shit to those in power.

To us, the powerless the CONSTITUTION still means something - because it serves as a shield against abuse.

But to those living and working inside Washington D.C., the CONSTITUTION is anything but a mere piece of paper, as for them, POWER IS EVERYTHING.

Their subjugation of their subjects (aka, people like you and me) did not start yesterday. It started DECADES AGO, it's only now that they have gained so much power that they have become SO EMBOLDEN that they dare to publicly dis-regard the Constitution and everything that was stated inside the Constitution.

Who is to blame for it ? Them in Washington, D.C., or us, the voters who voted them in, every fucking four years, without fail ?

We (US citizens) are now beholden to and RULED by persons who have broken their oaths to uphold the Constitution. I am appalled at the brazen and callous attitudes of our elected AND appointed "leaders". This callousness first caught my attention while I watched Oliver North, a sworn officer in the US Military, brazenly challenge the very precepts he was supposed to uphold. My impression of him is that he is a traitor, a coward, and a war criminal, and should have been prosecuted as such.

While I wholeheartedly agree with your statements and sentiments, I must ask this of your last sentence (specifically, "the voters who voted them in, every fucking four years, without fail?"): What choices do we truly have in a rigged system? How can "we" correct the situation? I am convinced that the US (as a Constitutional Republic) is in the throes of failure, akin to the "bread and circuses" phase of the Roman Empire (or, the Roaming Umpire, for Firesign Theatre fans). All hail Caliuga (sp?). Let's trump the Ump!

Re:Constitution ? What "constitution" ? (1)

gmanterry (1141623) | about a year ago | (#44805671)

There's no constitutional or legal basis for them not releasing it

I am afraid that we are living in a world where the CONSTITUTION ain't worth a shit to those in power.

To us, the powerless the CONSTITUTION still means something - because it serves as a shield against abuse.

But to those living and working inside Washington D.C., the CONSTITUTION is anything but a mere piece of paper, as for them, POWER IS EVERYTHING.

Their subjugation of their subjects (aka, people like you and me) did not start yesterday. It started DECADES AGO, it's only now that they have gained so much power that they have become SO EMBOLDEN that they dare to publicly dis-regard the Constitution and everything that was stated inside the Constitution.

Who is to blame for it ? Them in Washington, D.C., or us, the voters who voted them in, every fucking four years, without fail ?

We (US citizens) are now beholden to and RULED by persons who have broken their oaths to uphold the Constitution. I am appalled at the brazen and callous attitudes of our elected AND appointed "leaders". This callousness first caught my attention while I watched Oliver North, a sworn officer in the US Military, brazenly challenge the very precepts he was supposed to uphold. My impression of him is that he is a traitor, a coward, and a war criminal, and should have been prosecuted as such.

While I wholeheartedly agree with your statements and sentiments, I must ask this of your last sentence (specifically, "the voters who voted them in, every fucking four years, without fail?"): What choices do we truly have in a rigged system? How can "we" correct the situation? I am convinced that the US (as a Constitutional Republic) is in the throes of failure, akin to the "bread and circuses" phase of the Roman Empire (or, the Roaming Umpire, for Firesign Theatre fans). All hail Caliuga (sp?). Let's trump the Ump!

They are voted in every four years because they have rigged the system so that they can't be removed. Here in Arizona, a Red State, we want to get rid of John McCain. He can not be gotten rid of. No Republican will run against him because that is against the party rules and no one in a Red State wants another Democrat in congress. Who the hell do we vote for? We are 100% stuck with McCain although the majority wants him out. This is one of the main stumbling blocks of reforming government.

Re:Constitution ? What "constitution" ? (1)

arichnad (883811) | about a year ago | (#44805127)

But to those living and working inside Washington D.C., the CONSTITUTION is anything but a mere piece of paper, as for them, POWER IS EVERYTHING.

The people you're referring to rarely live in DC. They mostly reside outside of the city.

The people who live in DC have no power. Or at least no more power than you or I.

Huh ?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44806433)

The people who live in DC have no power. Or at least no more power than you or I.

Care to elaborate where that Casa Blanca is located ?

Inside, or outside of the Washington, D.C. ?

Care to elucidate the extent of the power that fella who lives inside that Casa Blanca ?

Re:Constitution ? What "constitution" ? (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#44806147)

Wow. The NSA is getting bold. Maybe they think wrapping the TRIGGER WORDS in <b> tags and ORing the chars with 0x20 will have some kind of CHILLING EFFECT on public outcry?

Sad to think that talking about your country's CONSTITUTION could get you on some kind of WATCH LIST...

Re:Constitution ? What "constitution" ? (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#44806151)

... Oh, FFS!

Re:Constitution ? What "constitution" ? (1)

TheSeatOfMyPants (2645007) | about a year ago | (#44806559)

Who is to blame for it ? Them in Washington, D.C., or us, the voters who voted them in, every fucking four years, without fail ?

We can't successfully vote out the corruption when the corporations/ultra-wealthy that own the mass media use it to ensure that any third-party political groups are thoroughly discredited, use their money/influence to "guide" the two functional political parties to only put forth candidates that will be sympathetic to their interests, and to ensure any recalcitrant/troublemaking politicians toe the line.

Re:Constitution ? What "constitution" ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44807045)

I think this post is a little harsh on the electorate. I mean... WHO ARE YOU GOING TO VOTE FOR? A Republican? A Democrat? Well, problem number one is that Republican or Democrat, the guy that wins is usually the guy that spent the most money to win (which precisely how our elected officials became prostitutes in suits) Problem number two is that the difference between the Republican and the Democrat is kinda like the difference between the "FACE" and the "HEEL" in "professional" wrestling. The controversies are every bit as polar and scripted as any television wrestling match. In every way that matters to the average American, both Democrats and Republicans regardless of which "side of the isle" they sit on, sit on the _same_ side... the one that doesn't represent average Americans or their interests.

Until Americans demand an end to practices such as corporations rewarding Politicians with high-paying cushy jobs after their time in government for "playing ball" and "being a friend" in government, the public financing of elections, or declare that corporations are NOT people with super-rights, it's not really going to matter who you vote for because they will be assaulted and ultimately corrupted by the same corrupting forces.

Re:Just realase the fucking info already (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44809811)

Which is why you're not in any way, shape, or form in charge of Google, Yahoo, or Facebook.

Gets popcorn (1)

wbr1 (2538558) | about a year ago | (#44803627)

As much as myself and others may dislike the way Google does certain things, they are primarily an advertising company and they have to turn a profit. That they are big enough to take the risk of standing up for our freedoms speaks volumes about the stewardship of the company. Let the Google bashers come out, but as they say, Haters Gonna Hate [tumblr.com] .

Re:Gets popcorn (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44803683)

Google, Yahoo, and Facebook weren't this vocal before the Snowden Chronicles. Disingenuous bullshit from all. This is only damage-control so they can continue making more money, it has nothing to do with your rights. Bootlicker.

-- Ethanol-fueled

Re:Gets popcorn (4, Insightful)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about a year ago | (#44803821)

Google, Yahoo, and Facebook weren't this vocal before the Snowden Chronicles. Disingenuous bullshit from all. This is only damage-control so they can continue making more money...

Well, let's face it. Right now these companies are probably seeing their plans for future growth go down the toilet - after all, why would anyone (especially from outside the US) even consider using their services now? I know the reports so far say they haven't taken a significant hit, but most businesses don't turn on a dime... any exit would need to be thought through. I expect this whole situation will be very bad for these companies as we get a year or two out.

But whatever their selfish motivations, these actions are ultimately to our benefit. They certainly have more clout than we do.

Re:Gets popcorn (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44803881)

google and friends most basic business model is based on spying and selling data. it didn't prevent people from using them, doesn't prevent them now and won't prevent it in the future. because people are stupid and lazy.

also it's difficult to have you own web-services when it's forbidden to have them on a non-business internet connection.

plus, uplink sucks.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

MickLinux (579158) | about a year ago | (#44804267)

It's not a case of lazy. But if you're chinese in china, how (aside from being a rich oligarch) are you going to use the internet at all without a firewall?

Same goes for the US. What ISP is immune? Or are you going to buy your own backbone?

I am a Chinese, and an American ! (5, Interesting)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about a year ago | (#44804379)

But if you're chinese in china, how (aside from being a rich oligarch) are you going to use the internet at all without a firewall?

How disingenuous you want to become ?

I am a Chinese and I am an American citizen, and I do have business in China, and yes, I sometime find myself INSIDE CHINA.

But the key point is NOT what's happening in China - for China, at least, up to now, NEVER PRETEND TO BE A DEMOCRATIC COUNTRY.

China never, at least not to my knowledge, use "human rights", "democracy", "equality" and all those shit, as "weapons of publicity" to shame other countries.

On the other hand, my country, the United States of America, has been doing just that, for at least the past 5 decades.

The United States has criticized other countries, from Russia to China to Sudan to North Korea for their lack of "democracy", "human rights", "equality" (not that those countries don't deserved to be criticized") but I find it utterly hypocritical for the United States, and for YOU, to use China as the RED HERRING to shore up your inane argument FOR the current repressive government of the United States of America.

What the US simply forgot, and... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804459)

Need to learn again, better perhaps, is "Be careful when you fight the monsters, lest you become one." Friedrich Nietzsche - Now rate me the hell up to +5 people! And you? Go back to your hut and smoke some rice. In order to deal with nefarious spies like Boris & Natasha from Bullwinkle cartoons, the USA had to adopt YOUR bogus pinko methods. Quit calling a kettle black and go boil up that rice to smoke already over there and chill out. You are banned from the coffee pot + no more amphetamines allowed either in your rice.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | about a year ago | (#44804403)

isp's are dumb pipes if you use a encrypted link, while US based certificate signatories may be untrustworthy that just means you need your cirt signed by a non us based signatory to prevent nsa man in the middle attacks.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

knarf (34928) | about a year ago | (#44806511)

I'd go one step further and refrain from using any official certificate authorities. Given that security at these places seems to be lacking (as shown by several compromised CA's in recent history) I see no reason to trust them. Given the benefits of being able to launch undetected MitM attacks I'd assume them to be compromised by a TLA (of FLA for those countries which tend to use wordier acronyms).

For your own purposes you can create your own CA. If you're a business you'll have to get your customers to install your CA into their browser/phone/etc. Given the media attention around the Snowden revelations you just have to point out that the CA's which come pre-installed are most likely compromised.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

morgauxo (974071) | about a year ago | (#44804103)

Yeah, no doubt everyone moved off the cloud as soon as the leaks began...

Re:Gets popcorn (3, Interesting)

erice (13380) | about a year ago | (#44803993)

Google, Yahoo, and Facebook weren't this vocal before the Snowden Chronicles. Disingenuous bullshit from all. This is only damage-control so they can continue making more money, it has nothing to do with your rights. Bootlicker.

-- Ethanol-fueled

Sure. It's damage control but look at it from their point of view. They are getting orders from a secret court. If they complain in a manner that is legal, nobody hears it. Nothing changes. If they complain in a manner that could get the public's attention, employees risk criminal prosecution, the company loses credibility (because it looks like they are the ones collaborating), AND nothing may change. Damned if you don't. Double damned if you do.

After Snowden, the damage is done, and their best course of action is to raise as much of a stink as much as possible. Which still looks lame because the law is written to squash effective opposition and no one wants to go to jail over this.

I'm sure you think you would be willing to be the hero. But do you really want to be prosecuted for a federal offense in a secret court?

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

ae1294 (1547521) | about a year ago | (#44806419)

I'm sure you think you would be willing to be the hero. But do you really want to be prosecuted for a federal offense in a secret court?

To steal some IP from the trolls. I think you will have to be "an hero" at this point to fight them but the same could be siad at the start of the US when it faced the superpower of that time.

... on the other hand, where is Microsoft ? (2)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about a year ago | (#44804347)

Google, Yahoo, and Facebook weren't this vocal before the Snowden Chronicles. Disingenuous bullshit from all.

Disingenuous bullshit or otherwise, where the hell is MICROSOFT ?

Maybe Google, Facebook, Yahoo are not sincere (and most probably they are not) in their latest publicity stunt, but at least, they are putting up a dog and pony show.

On the other hand, MICROSOFT's silence all these while is really deafening.

Re:... on the other hand, where is Microsoft ? (1)

bmo (77928) | about a year ago | (#44804385)

> where the hell is MICROSOFT ?

NSA_KEY

--
BMO

Filter error: Don't use so many caps. It's like YELLING.

Re:... on the other hand, where is Microsoft ? (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year ago | (#44804605)

NSA_KEY

hey, man, they're keeping up with the times too:

"When we upgrade or update products we aren't absolved from the need to comply with existing or future lawful demands."

Re:Gets popcorn (2)

Guppy06 (410832) | about a year ago | (#44803711)

That they are big enough to take the risk of standing up for our freedoms speaks volumes about the stewardship of the company.

Or they are simply trying to give such an appearance to try to salvage the loss of business the NSA scandal is creating for such online services. They need not actually care while "framing the message" so longs the ultimate impact to their bottom line is negligible.

Want to see how Google, et al really feel? Keep an eye on their political campaign contributions, past and future.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about a year ago | (#44804143)

Or they are simply trying to give such an appearance to try to salvage the loss of business the NSA scandal is creating for such online services.

The problem with your idea is that in fact there has been no loss in business for Google over their cooperation with the NSA, and indeed the average American doesn't really care.

I know it's popular to spout the anti-big-business line when you are in college, but as you grow older and wiser, you will find that your over-simplistic idealism doesn't mesh with reality.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | about a year ago | (#44805071)

And if they actually had a problem with NSA snooping they wouldn't continue throwing campaign money at the incumbents on the Congressional committees responsible for said snooping.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year ago | (#44803725)

While what they're doing is laudable it isn't a fight for our freedom, it's a fight for their bottom line. How many are now shutting GPS off on their phones when they're not using it? How many are avoiding these services as much as possible?

And Google is surely losing cloud customers. It seems to me that this has Google scared shitless.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

morgauxo (974071) | about a year ago | (#44804149)

Ughh.

How many probably think that the problem is fixed just by doing that? No wonder there isn't more protest!

First, just monitoring which cell tower your phone is communicating with (and it is always communicating) shows at least what neighborhood you are in. Checking your signal levels at a few adjacent towers can narrow it down even better.

Second... prove to me that your GPS is actually off. So.. your non-government apps don't see it anymore and the icon went away. Can you see the actual charges on those little transistor switches inside your phone's chips? How can you KNOW your GPS is off?

But... hey.. Joe Sixpack signed off of Four Square for a while. Yay! The Constitution is saved! We can all go home now.

Re:Gets popcorn (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804989)

How can you KNOW your GPS is off?

Because my battery life increased by a factor of five?

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

ae1294 (1547521) | about a year ago | (#44806427)

can be faked.... have you taken it out and put it in another phone? ran a bat check yourself?

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

bmo (77928) | about a year ago | (#44804375)

>How many are now shutting GPS off on their phones when they're not using it?

It's required for E-911. By Law. Either that or triangulation via towers. It's probably never off.

--
BMO

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year ago | (#44806329)

Not all phones have GPS so I don't see how it could be mandatory by law, but yes, they can triangulate your position from cell towers, albeit with lower precision.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

bmo (77928) | about a year ago | (#44806583)

>Not all phones have GPS so I don't see how it could be mandatory by law,

You forgot to read the rest of the sentence. Cell providers are /required by law/ to supply lat/long. If your phone has GPS, it's going to be used for E911. And I said "failing that, they will use triangulation."

http://www.fcc.gov/guides/wireless-911-services [fcc.gov]

Phase II E911 rules require wireless service providers to provide more precise location information to PSAPs; specifically, the latitude and longitude of the caller. This information must be accurate to within 50 to 300 meters depending upon the type of location technology used.

Since the GPS in the phone is the easiest way to comply, it's not going to be off when you call 911.

--
BMO

Re:Gets popcorn (4, Insightful)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year ago | (#44803789)

That they are big enough to take the risk of standing up for our freedoms

They have petitioned the government to publish the number of requests they fully respond to. After the spying scandals have started (not before)

That is a far cry from "standing up for our freedoms". They are not contesting any of the requests yet, are they?

Re:Gets popcorn (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804181)

Google constantly pushes back on requests and publishes numbers about how many requests they contest. They've sued governments multiple times when the governments try to overreach. Recently, they were outed as the company behind a completely redacted court case against secret surveillance.

Yes, they've done a ton. More so than any other large company, and they'll continue doing that. The founders believe heavily in a free and open internet, and they're willing to stand up to people trying to take that away, whether it means suing the US government or burning bridges with Apple.

Re:Gets popcorn (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804315)

All of which is about their bottom line and nothing more. It takes a special kind of naivete to truly believe they're spending money fighting this nonsense out of the goodness of their hearts.

Re:Gets popcorn (1)

lgw (121541) | about a year ago | (#44804923)

All of which is about their bottom line and nothing more. It takes a special kind of naivete to truly believe they're spending money fighting this nonsense out of the goodness of their hearts.

Why would that matter? Seriously, do you totally misunderstand capitalism? The entire point of the system is that people can benefit from the greedy, self-interested actions of companies, as long as the companies must compete for our business. And here it's working perfectly.

Google and Facebook both have serious money at stake here. At some point they're going to realize they should each just mail a check for $1 million to each and every congresscritter, and that they actually have that kind of money. If that benefits us, at least at first, so much the better.

Re:Gets popcorn (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44810213)

By fighting for their own rights for their own selfish reasons, they benefit all of us. Any court cases they win they win for all of us, not just "Google".

Of course no one you dont know or love is going to do anything for you out of the good of their hearts - not many people are that stupid.

"Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court" (2)

l2718 (514756) | about a year ago | (#44803637)

First, note the name of the court. Second, consider the surveillance Google et al would like to discuss.

Re:"Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court" (1)

BlueStrat (756137) | about a year ago | (#44804537)

"Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court"

First, note the name of the court. Second, consider the surveillance Google et al would like to discuss.

If you are not "Of the Body" (one of the elite power brokers and their cronies & minions instead of Landru, in this case) then your are "Foreign", QED.

This administration refers to whistleblowering as "betrayal". Not betrayal of the US and it's people and/or the constitution, but betrayal of the power-elite and politicians working together to gradually enslave the nation and eventually the world, if not stopped.

This has nothing to do with (R) or (D). Both are nearly equally guilty. They only fight over things that inflame, anger, polarize, and keep the people divided against each other. It's Kabuki theater designed to distract from what the other hand is doing.

How about we at least temporarily pause the "Two Minute Hate" BS and argue and fight about Trayvon, immigration, abortion, Obamacare, gay marriage, etc etc etc, *AFTER* we take care of the assholes that are trying to put chains, gags, slave-collars, and anal-probe huggies on *ALL* of us, mmkay?

Strat

You know that things are bad... (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year ago | (#44803657)

When Google, Yahoo, and Facebook join together to assert that the state of surveillance on the internet is out of hand, you know you are totally fucked.

It's like having the horsemen of the apocalypse criticizing your policy decisions.

Re:You know that things are bad... (2)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about a year ago | (#44803731)

If this (limited amount that we know of) is what the NSA is doing with Facebook and email, can you imagine what they're up to with spying on IRC channels? I'll bet even using IRC is enough to get you on a list.

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year ago | (#44803741)

I'm pretty sure that they check IRC activity when making capacity-planning decisions for the FEMA detention camps...

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about a year ago | (#44803791)

I assumed they used it in their hollow-point ammo buy quantities.

Re:You know that things are bad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44806601)

nah irc is safer than mainstream media.
Trusted network + SSL server-links + SSL connections required in channel + channel limited to people you know: have fun getting anything NSA.

Re:You know that things are bad... (4, Interesting)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#44803743)

When Google, Yahoo, and Facebook join together to assert that the state of surveillance on the internet is out of hand, you know you are totally fucked.

Actually, they seem to be claiming just the opposite. That they have been unfairly maligned by the Snowden leaks and they want to clear their names.

I'm not quite sure what they can say that would make me believe them. So far their public statements have felt like they were as ultra-parsed as the NSA's own denials.

Re:You know that things are bad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44803785)

actually more like: Google an friends want to better their image with lies and marketing campains but they can't lie if they are forbidden to talk about it at all.

Re:You know that things are bad... (2)

Nerdfest (867930) | about a year ago | (#44804241)

You'll notice that Microsoft is not there. I don't think they have been unfairly maligned.

Re: You know that things are bad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804561)

Microsoft is a beatch that have her full holes stinking with nSSa's dick... both share a TSD since a long time ago, so MS like a good whoe with cash in the bag is just enjoying this halloween party. If she talks about is own TDS just imagine is we the clients want to lie in bed with her.
I'll just go to bed with my vestal Linux distro (pure love)

Re: You know that things are bad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804639)

I can't stop thinking about that my virginal Linux maybe has been raped by some closed source drivers like nVidia, ATI or other... damn it!

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

mysidia (191772) | about a year ago | (#44804571)

You'll notice that Microsoft is not there. I don't think they have been unfairly maligned.

With Ballmer at the helm; upper management hasn't even realized yet that there is this Snowden thing, and that the debacle is a threat to their future business. It hurts Google, so they see it as a win for their services -- which they are always claiming protect your privacy better... remember the whole Don't get Scroogled campaign?

When MS catches up and realizes about the Snowden thing; they'll probably wait until Google releases data to launch their next campaign showing how Google/Yahoo are allegedly "in bed with the feds"

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

WCMI92 (592436) | about a year ago | (#44804601)

Biggest threat to Microsoft's business was their massive blunder with Windows 8, and the failure of Windows 8.1 to fix it in any meaningful way. So what if we get the "start" button back only to be taken back to the retarded touch interface of monochromatic tile bullshit where you can't find your applications!

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

mysidia (191772) | about a year ago | (#44804815)

That's an issue.... but at least Microsoft still offers On-Premise server solutions. Google doesn't have an on-premise version of Google Apps that you can purchase, download, and deploy in your own datacenter; without pushing your data resources out to the cloud where they are easy pickings for the Three-letter-agencies.

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

voidphoenix (710468) | about a year ago | (#44806087)

Does it really make a difference if those on-premise solutions are _also_ back-doored?

Re:You know that things are bad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804813)

Err? http://www.zdnet.com/microsoft-google-v-nsa-lawsuit-to-proceed-7000020311/

Microsoft and Google's motion at the FISC (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court) to allow them to disclose their policies and some aggregate data on their compliance with court-ordered disclosures of customer data will be proceeding to litigation before the FISC.

In July, both companies made vague motions to the court for such disclosure. Microsoft explained their motion in a blog entry by General Counsel & Executive Vice President, Legal & Corporate Affairs Brad Smith.

Come again?

Re:You know that things are bad... (2)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#44804685)

So far their public statements have felt like they were as ultra-parsed as the NSA's own denials.

You mean like this one, from David Drummond's (Google's chief legal counsel) live Q&A with the Guardian:

I'm not sure I can say this more clearly: we're not in cahoots with the NSA and there’s is no government program that Google participates in that allows the kind of access that the media originally reported. Note that I say "originally" because you'll see that many of those original sources corrected their articles after it became clear that the PRISM slides were not accurate. Now, what does happen is that we get specific requests from the government for user data. We review each of those requests and push back when the request is overly broad or doesn't follow the correct process. There is no free-for-all, no direct access, no indirect access, no back door, no drop box.

If that strikes you as "ultra-parsed", I submit that you're the one doing the parsing, not Drummond.

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#44804693)

Oh, forgot the link [theguardian.com] .

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#44805137)

There is no free-for-all, no direct access, no indirect access, no back door, no drop box.

If that strikes you as "ultra-parsed", I submit that you're the one doing the parsing, not Drummond.

You are right, that particular statement does not sound ultra-parsed. Given what we know about CALEA [wikipedia.org] it sounds like a lie, particularly the "no indirect access" part.

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#44805199)

There is no free-for-all, no direct access, no indirect access, no back door, no drop box.

If that strikes you as "ultra-parsed", I submit that you're the one doing the parsing, not Drummond.

You are right, that particular statement does not sound ultra-parsed. Given what we know about CALEA [wikipedia.org] it sounds like a lie, particularly the "no indirect access" part.

Based on what we know about CALEA, that conclusion makes no sense.

The PRISM claims were about sweeping, general access that grabbed basically all data. CALEA requires telecoms providers to provide intercepts when presented with a warrant. Though the law doesn't say so, I'd suppose that a National Security Letter would do as well, but neither case requires broad access, only specific, targeted intercepts when presented with a lawful request.

Drummond specifically addressed that aspect in the sentence immediately prior to the one you quoted. You snipped it, so allow me to re-quote it: "We review each of those requests and push back when the request is overly broad or doesn't follow the correct process." That's what CALEA and NSLs require.

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#44805355)

The PRISM claims were about sweeping, general access that grabbed basically all data.

Actually the PRISM claims were all of one line from an NSA slide that specifically said "direct access." Some people extrapolated that into all kinds of other things, but the actual reporting was very specific and the Guardian was careful to always reference that NSA's statement in their reporting.

Drummond specifically addressed that aspect in the sentence immediately prior to the one you quoted.

That's funny, you are now arguing that Drummond was parsing his words. That his broad and sweeping denials were actually limited.

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#44807185)

Drummond specifically addressed that aspect in the sentence immediately prior to the one you quoted.

That's funny, you are now arguing that Drummond was parsing his words. That his broad and sweeping denials were actually limited.

Huh? I guess if you're bound and determined to find duplicity, you'll keep looking until you do.

His broad denials flatly contradicted any sort of open access. Period. He also acknowledged that Google complies with lawful requests... but with the caveat that each request is scrutinized.

How is that hard to understand?

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#44807429)

He also acknowledged that Google complies with lawful requests... but with the caveat that each request is scrutinized.

(a) There has never been a question of "lawfulness"
(b) His broad-but-not-broad denial doesn't address how specific each request must be. We already know the FISA court was OK with a single request covering basically every customer at each telco

I guess if you're bound and determined to find duplicity, you'll keep looking until you do.

Fool me once...

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

StormReaver (59959) | about a year ago | (#44804817)

So far their public statements have felt like they were as ultra-parsed as the NSA's own denials.

And I don't blame them. They are walking a razor thin line even talking about the subject all, our government has become so fascist.

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

hobarrera (2008506) | about a year ago | (#44803981)

Of course it's bad. It reflects badly on their image, and that's bad for revenue.

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year ago | (#44804159)

Nah, they're just pissed off that they have new competition. The old neighborhood was just fine, thankyouverymuch.

Re:You know that things are bad... (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about a year ago | (#44808087)

When Google, Yahoo, and Facebook join together to assert that the state of surveillance on the internet is out of hand, you know you are totally fucked.

Not really.

You have to realize the business model - all of them sell your information for money. Google especially since that's their core revenue stream - not just Google Ads, but every other ad network they own, including DoubleClick. Between ads, Google Analytics, YouTube and other Google properties, they pretty much know your entire surfing history. (Google DNS may deny it, but that's just because they haven't found a way to monetize the information).

Key word: SELL

Governments want that information for FREE.

Between the three of them, there's more information on everyone than any government could hope to collect for itself. So they're tempting targets.

Perhaps one should worry about the agencies that aren't mentioned - perhaps because they're paying for the information like any other company is wanting to buy ads and gather analytics.

well now (1)

slick7 (1703596) | about a year ago | (#44803667)

As the saying goes, "It's easier to ask forgiveness than permission."

Re:well now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804263)

Consequences are a lot harsher if the answer is no, though.

Re:well now (1)

celle (906675) | about a year ago | (#44804505)

"It's easier to ask forgiveness than permission."

    But it may not be safer.

No redactions, so why the scanned PDF? (1)

whoever57 (658626) | about a year ago | (#44803729)

What's with Yahoo's lawyers? Their motion is filed as a scanned pdf file -- no searchable text.

I can understand the need to do this with redacted documents, but this document contains no redactions. It's the 21st centary already, why can't Zwillgen PLLC get with the times already?

Re:No redactions, so why the scanned PDF? (1)

Connie_Lingus (317691) | about a year ago | (#44803847)

yes...the same 21st century where free [a-pdf.com] pdf-to-text [zamzar.com] are a dime a dozen?

Yes, it IS the 21st century... (1)

mschaffer (97223) | about a year ago | (#44803979)

Yes, it is the 21st century, and the NSA has access to everyone's electronic files.
So, I guess Yahoo's lawyers are off-the-grid (so to speak) to maintain privacy?

Re:No redactions, so why the scanned PDF? (1)

lachlan76 (770870) | about a year ago | (#44806247)

I recall reading at one point that many law firms will print and scan documents to make sure that nothing else is in the file unintentionally (undo data, etc.).

So let me get this straight (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44803795)

Some of the parties that previously conspired to spy on the citizens of this planet, were caught spying, then developed a conscience. Perhaps they will succeed and then they can pinky promise not to spy.

Unfortunately the damage from spying is abstract. some of it is measurable in the billions, but mostly not.

This is all for show (1)

namgge (777284) | about a year ago | (#44803859)

Between them Google, Yahoo and Facebook pretty much own the American Government. How much does it cost to buy an American politician these days?

Re:This is all for show (2)

Guy Harris (3803) | about a year ago | (#44804145)

Between them Google, Yahoo and Facebook pretty much own the American Government.

...because, of course, there are no other large US corporations that might have their own desires, not always aligned with those three corporations.

Re:This is all for show (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804801)

Nah. There is way more oil, agribusiness, Koch, Soros, Eall Street, Pharma, Chamber of Commerce, RIAA & MPAA, etc money to be had. Tech is a minor blip when it comes to K Street influence peddling.

What about the "hooks" hardware? (1)

stanlyb (1839382) | about a year ago | (#44803869)

Are they also going to ask the government whether they have installed a special hardware inside their network and cloud servers? Or this is another story...

Is there a need for "Special Hardware" ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804419)

Are they also going to ask the government whether they have installed a special hardware inside their network and cloud servers?

There is no need for any SPECIAL HARDWARE at all.

All NSA need is to use Cisco devices, which comes with NSA backdoor, pre-installed.

Eff Google - Liars (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44803877)

Face it.

Facebook, Google, Yahoo (also Google), Twitter and all the big boys ARE the NSA.

NSA could not do anything without the implicit and explicate support of these guys AND Apple, Microsoft and Cisco, et al.

Eff Google.

All of this is a parade of propaganda and misdirection. It's a psy-op and YOU are the target.

Google is the Surveillance State.

Talk about contempt for customers.

"Do No Evil?!"

  How about, "Bend over and you better enjoy it."

tRUST (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44803917)

Am I the only one at /. that doesn't want to entrust the welfare of my fellow Americans' national security to international corporations? WTF?

Re:tRUST (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44803943)

after all the news... sorry to say that but there is no hope for america. you people may have (unlike in europe) weapons and you still didn't take down your corrupt goverment. what do you expect? everything that's happening is happening because you let it happen.

Re:tRUST (1)

Guy Harris (3803) | about a year ago | (#44804119)

Am I the only one at /. that doesn't want to entrust the welfare of my fellow Americans' national security to international corporations? WTF?

And corporations with no activities outside the US would be better?

Ballz (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804277)

I wish these corporations would show as much ballz in this matter as they do when they attack each other. Then maybe they would simply publish the "forbidden" data, and let the chips fall where they may. And that's definitely a way to get this whole mess to court. Come on, corporations, what do you say? You have all the legal rights of a "natural" person (and then some) and none of the responsibilities, so why not take your best shot? It's not like the feds have enough money to survive all the litigation that would ensue.

Re:Ballz (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44804413)

If only that were all true. The yearly budget for these intelligence services is $50 billion. Damn, that's burning the personal fortune of a Bill Gates or Warren Buffett every year!

The government has NO AUTHORITY (2)

WCMI92 (592436) | about a year ago | (#44804591)

...to pass laws abridging THE FREEDOM OF SPEECH, or the PRESS...

These companies don't need to beg the government or grovel before any court. The Constitution grants them the right to free speech, INCLUDING the right to disclose what the GOVERNMENT is demanding of them to violate their customers.

It's time to quit ACCEPTING the premise of this kind of government power and authority. It's time to start showing the Obama Regime the SAME LEVEL OF RESPECT it's showing to the Constitution!

This is where US starts to loose it's dominance (1)

LostMonk (1839248) | about a year ago | (#44805095)

This is where US starts to loose it's dominance of the major power controlling the internet.
The big American software and internet companies will never enjoy the same confidence as before. A few years from now we'll start to see non-american alternatives to Google, Facebook, Microsoft and their likes, and re-routing of major international data hardlines and junctions.
100 years from now people will be wearing Swonden masks instead of Guy Fawkes

Re:This is where US starts to loose it's dominance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44810155)

This is where US starts to loose it's dominance of the major power controlling the internet.

I sincerely doubt they intend to set their dominance free, which is what you actually said.

What if they actually did it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44805791)

All at the same time - would the Government shut down Facebook, Google, Yahoo etc.? That might finally be the thing that made Americans take note of just how far their freedoms have been shoved up the governments ass.

for ( good in goose ) gander[good] = true; (2)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#44806185)

Just do it anyway, even if they know it'll cause a stir. Then, apologize for it later, but continue anyway since the "damage" has already been done and they can get back to the immortal corporate duel for monopoly (this time the fight's over spying... "There can be only ONE!").

Just like everything else they do.

Deception (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44807873)

Google knowns damn well that the secret court is not going to give a blessing for a public debate. Clearly google is only trying to save face with the public.

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