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More on Internet Privacy Legislation

michael posted more than 12 years ago | from the prior-proper-planning-protects-privacy dept.

United States 135

Last week we noted that Senator Hollings had introduced a privacy bill and that there were likely to be more introduced. Now Salon has a piece critical of Hollings' bill. EPIC wrote about it as well, and they seem to think it's not too bad, all things considered. Read Hollings' bill yourself and decide who's right. Also of note is a bill introduced in the House that would require all Federal agencies to prepare privacy impact statements (the ACLU has a summary) akin to the environmental impact statements now required for actions adversely affecting the environment. Seems like a good idea to me.

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Read below for more on my m4d f1r5t p05t1ng 5k1llz (-1)

Pr0n K1ng (160688) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417566)

Get it in you!

Re:Read below for more on my m4d f1r5t p05t1ng 5k1 (-1)

YourMissionForToday (556292) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417699)

Have you ever thought about making a P0rn K1ng tshirt? It just says "First Post!" on the front and then "Get it in you!" on the back (with pr0n k1ng written in a smaller font underneath)? You should do it! Or at least make a www.goatse.cx shirt.

NO PICKLES (-1)

Anonymous Cowrad (571322) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417809)

Ok, so if someone came up to you and said 'no pickles', what would you think? That the guy didn't want any pickles, right? Right.

So how come the fucker behind the counter doesn't understand 'no pickles'? There are only two words in that statement, and both of them are staggeringly simple. Do not give me pickles. No. Pickles.

So I got this burger with fucking pickles on it. I took a bite of one and almost fucking horked,

Next time I go in there I'm going to bring a baseball bat with 'NO PICKLES' written on it. We'll see if that fucker trys the old 'between the lettuce and tomato' trick then.

On the Origins of the Spider-Man Boner (-1)

YourMissionForToday (556292) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417572)

Now that the Spider-Man movie is coming to theaters, I'd like to take a moment to clarify a few of the myths that have surrounded the Spider-Man universe for the past few years. Specifically, I'd like to address the origin of pop-culture catchphrase "the Spider-Man boner," as in, "Weezer gives me a Spider-Man boner!," "Sorry, I can't go out tonight, I have a Spider-Man boner!," or, "That is like, so, Spider-Man boner."

Myth:In Amazing Spider-Man #1 Peter Parker, or Spider-Man, coins the phrase "With great power comes great responibility," in reference to his super-powers and crimefighting.

Spider-Man feels that his super-powers give him a greater civic responsibility than the rest of us, and because of this, he fights crime.

Fact: Spider-Man actually said, "With great power, comes...Oh good god! I'm so fucking hard right now!"

Being bitten by a radioactive spider didn't just give Peter Parker amazing spider-powers. Nope, it also kinked his brain in a very unique way: crimefighting became an aphrodisiac to him.

Myth: Spider-Man's costume was designed to strike fear into the hearts of criminals.

Admittedly, many people are afraid of spiders, but the blue and red tones don't exactly strike fear.

Fact: Spider-Man's costume was designed to downplay the bulges in his crotchocological region.

Notice the busy black "webbing" pattern that steers the eyes to the middle of the chest, and the gentle color sloping that brings the eyes down towards the boots without emphasizing the crotch. This is because Spidey's chronic ( and often painful) priapism is linked to his career as a costumed do-gooder. He doesn't want anyone to see his perpetual crime-fighting inspired erection, but there it is, poking out underneath his tights despite his greatest efforts. And thus, the expression "Spider-Man" boner was born.

Myth: Spider-Man has sexual intercourse with his enemies.

So, you see Spidey happily webslinging from building to building, just after trapping Doctor Octopus and saving the city. You see the erection, and perhaps even an unfortunate stain, and you think, "He and Doc Ock probably had some rough sex just like Michael Douglas!"

Fact:Spider-Man is faithful to his wife.

Besides some drunken, clumsy rooftop sex between he and Felicia Hardy (aka the Black Cat) after an office party in 1999, Spidey has always remained faithful to Mary Jane, his bride. While fighting crime remains an incredibly arousing experience for the wall-crawler, his outward expressions of lust remain limited to his marriage partner. Mary Jane herself has no problem with this-"As long as New York has muggers, we'll never need Viagra!" she quipped in a recent interview with Vogue.

When you go to see the Spider-Man feature, remember that Spidey isn't completely altruistic-he does get quite a charge out of it. And if you ever get a chance to see him, be sure to tell him, "Great job fighting crime!" and let him know that you don't mind that he has a big boner-it's all part of God's plan.

Re:On the Origins of the Spider-Man Boner (-1)

Anonymous Cowrad (571322) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417974)

mâcherez-vous mon poulet?

your mother was an elderberry (-1)

Anonymous Cowrad (571322) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417581)

and your father smelled of hamsters.

Re:your mother was an elderberry (-1)

ReluctantBadger (550830) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417719)


  • ecky ecky ecky petang zoom boing - NI!

Voices from the Hellstorung! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417595)

Uh oh! 17 German kids dead in a school rampage. I didn't know they had
FPS games and Lunix in Germany! I thought it was all yodelling and beer
drinking and shit like that.

's/Columbine/Erfurt/g'

But wait! There's more! In a cruel irony, Voices from the Hellmouth was
published on April 26. Today is April 26.

Don't believe me?

See for yourself! [slashdot.org]

Anyways, Katz bullshit aside, I thought we took guns away from the Germans
or something? You give them a few Lugars and the next thing you know they're
fucking rolling tanks through your city. I'm glad we disarmed them and allowed
them to only build cars but I'm a little confused as to how something like
this can happen?

Re:Voices from the Hellstorung! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417690)

You give them a few Lugars and the next thing you know they're fucking rolling tanks through your city

OMG do you sound french!

Damn cheese eating surrender monkey!

Re:Voices from the Hellstorung! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417705)

Ha! The very same euro trash that bitches about guns in the US.

Gun control in Germany didn't slow this guy down, but it made it easier for them to send the Jews to the concentration camps.

Re:Voices from the Hellstorung! (-1)

returnofthe_spork (552824) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417746)

I love my guns! How about we go execute some COMMIES! YEE-HAH!

Re:Voices from the Hellstorung! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3418105)

I detect sarcasm. You must be a Nazi. Or at least a Nazi sympathizer.

Godwin's law does not apply since this thread is about Germany.

I live in South Carolina and... (-1, Flamebait)

gamorck (151734) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417596)

I will attest to the fact that Senator Hollings is one of the dumbest men alive. In fact he ranks only second when it comes to idiocy to the great Senator Strom Thurmond, who as you may recall was also elected by the ultra idiotic voters in South Carolina.

I mean watching that guy at a speech or an event (which isn't very often either) reminds me so much of Weekend at Bernies that its just kinda sad.

But when you guys talk about Hollings keep in mind that he lives in a state where the congress wastes their time whining about taking down or putting up some stupid confederate flag. He lives in a state where there are towns in which it is ILLEGAL to buy alcohol on a Sunday. He lives in a state that outlawed Video Poker but legalized a lottery because they wanted to get their cut.

So no matter what comes out of that mans mouth - I don't think it matters much. The other bill we spent so much time whining about didnt get very far so why should this one be any different?

You gotta know the man before you know the problem :-)

J

Re:I live in South Carolina and... (1)

PrinceAshitaka (562972) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417698)

I live in a STATE where it is illegal to buy alchohol anywhere on sundays. Not that I have any specific comment about this parent I'm just explaining that your life could be WORSE, You could live in INDIANA.

Re:I live in South Carolina and... (0)

gamorck (151734) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417788)

What I want to know is - how is it legal to restrict my choice to buy alcohol on Sundays because of some ass backward religion that the inbred locals take for granted?

Seperation of Church and State anybody? I personally think the reason they make it illegal is that these churchies know they haven't got the brass to actually resist the tempation to do so.

What better way to preserve the integrity of your spiritual conscience than by making the life of everybody more miserable..... sigh.

J

Re:I live in South Carolina and... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417864)

You must be young. I remember when it was illegal for virtually *any* retail store to even open their doors on Sunday.

Laws change, but sometimes slowly. There are still plenty of counties in Texas and Oklahoma where it's illegal to buy alcohol at all on any day of the week.

Re:I live in South Carolina and... (0)

gamorck (151734) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417927)

Yes I am "rather" young in an absolute sense :-) It just boggles the mind that a country which was primarily colonized by people looking to escape from religious oppression have begun to oppress (maybe begun isnt the right word) their own people religiously. Ahhhh will wonders never cease?

J

Re:I live in South Carolina and... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417740)

"In fact he ranks only second when it comes to idiocy to the great Senator Strom Thurmond, who as you may recall was also elected by the ultra idiotic voters in South Carolina. "

Don't forget about Robert Ford. SC could be the basis of an argument to get rid of elections all together ;p

Re:I live in South Carolina and... (1)

Indras (515472) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417987)

He lives in a state where there are towns in which it is ILLEGAL to buy alcohol on a Sunday.

I live in Michigan. There are towns here that are completely dry. No alcohol at all. It depends on the town, not the state.

Strom Thurmond (2)

Lemmy Caution (8378) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418008)

I wouldn't blame Strom for his ignorance. He got the best education the Holy Roman Empire could provide!

Any for a HOT LUNCH? (-1)

LunchLady (555057) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417597)

Does anyone want to fire some HOT LUNCH my way?

Re:Any for a HOT LUNCH? (-1)

Anonymous Cowrad (571322) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417619)

I love you. What would you like for lunch?

An avocado burger sounds good to me. With some fried zuccini. A little ranch for dipping, and some now&laters for desert.

Wanna go out to lunch sometime? Are you really a lady?

fourth (-1)

Anonymous Cowrad (571322) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417601)

or fifth

i love it when you do that

heh, and now we mix it (2, Informative)

tandr (108948) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417607)

with this [zwire.com] and guess which one will prevail ?

(title of the page is "The state Legislature has given police power to search your home without telling you why."

Re:heh, and now we mix it (1)

Eagle5596 (575899) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417710)

This is absolutely outrageous, I do hope someone takes this up with the state court system so that it can be overturned. It is a disturbing time we live in when people consider the right to be suspicious more important than the personal rights as citizens. It seems our government has forgotten so quickly the times when we were under the rule of britain and fought for our freedom from these self same violations.

IMHO, this is exactly analogous to what is going to start happening in our computers if the good Senator's bill is passed.

Re:heh, and now we mix it (1)

bleckywelcky (518520) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417749)


Woa, geez! I live in Michigan and had no clue this was even passed. I'm gonna have to check the voting records of my representatives...

Re:heh, and now we mix it (1)

the_2nd_coming (444906) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417939)

I guess I am voting for the chalenger...though Iwas going to anyway since I am a green party supporter :-)

No right to privacy (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417608)

Too bad there is no Constitutional right to privacy..... then these efforts could have real teeth (or perhaps be unnecessary).

Re:No right to privacy (2, Insightful)

JThaddeus (531998) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417700)

I wonder about this "no Constitutional right to privacy" claim. Look at Amendments IX and X:

Amendment IX: The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X: The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Re:No right to privacy (1)

Eagle5596 (575899) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417742)

Actually the supreme court has ruled many times that these amendments guarrentee a reasonable right to privacy (reasonable giving the government the right to revoke said rights if a search warrent can be obtained, or other such documents which produce the claim that there is a high probability that illegal activities could be occuring).

so the court made one up... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417759)

So the Supremes made one up. They can just as easily un-make it. We need an actual amendment.

It is not there (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417744)

It is not there. The amendments you quote are vague and can be used to support just about anything. If we added a new amendment that actually had a right to privacy, it would be in the constitution. But it is not there yet.

Re:It is not there (1)

Eagle5596 (575899) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417871)

Yes the amendments quoted are vauge, they were left intentionally vauge by the founding fathers because they understood the need for extensibility beyond the adding of an amendment to the constitution. The supreme court has often used the "elastic amendments" to rule for things which seem intuitive rights, but which are not as of yet, provided for in the current government. The fact that they are not amendments does not make them any less important.

Yes it would be nice to have an amendment which protects our privacy, but I doubt such a thing will happen anytime in the near future. Amendments are not added on a whim, they take time, and often (unfortunatly) suffering. Our privacy is just beginning to be truly broken, and it will take some large transgressions before an amendment will be considered, as well as a different world climate. I am afraid many of our national leaders would fear that an amendment for privacy would be seen as pro-terrorist. It's a shame that everything we see this days is cast in that light.

In Other News: (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417614)

2002-04-26 18:32:50 Vivendi Shareholder meeting hacked (articles,news) (rejected)

No joke. You'll read about it in the major media soon. Bloomberg news reported it minutes ago.

Re:In Other News: (-1)

Anonymous Cowrad (571322) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417675)

you're not talking about this [yahoo.com] , are you?

Re:In Other News: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417697)

Actually, This [yahoo.com] , but I had scooped Dow Jones. Check the times.

Re:In Other News: (-1)

Anonymous Cowrad (571322) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417756)

uhmmmm
k
so then
this isn't really news at all
and it was rejected
i see

Re:In Other News: (0, Offtopic)

EastCoastSurfer (310758) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417773)

You haven't yet figured out that slashdot cannot post timely news. It must be old news to be on slashdot.

sensitive/non-sensitive (5, Insightful)

Transient0 (175617) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417622)

---direct quote from bill

(c) NONSENSITIVE PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE INFORMATION REQUIRES ROBUST NOTICE AND OPT-OUT CONSENT- An internet service provider, online service provider, or operator of a commercial website may not--

(1) collect personally identifiable information not described in subsection (b) online, or
(2) disclose or otherwise use such information collected online, from a user of that service or website.

---end quote

Salon's article does sem a bit overly critical. This bill is a necessary piece of legislation. Sure some would like to see it even stricter(prohibiting any spyware style market research), but as it is it prohibits companies from collecting sensitive information and also from collecting information which is non-sensitve but could potentially be used to identify you.

The Salon article implies that the bill will allow companies to collect all sorts of non-sensitive personal information and use it to build a complete profile of you, including the stuff that can't be directly collected due to it's sensitivity. This just isn't true.

Re:sensitive/non-sensitive (2)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417713)

It's a little over critical, but not as much as you think.

Another quote from the bill:

SEC. 104. EXCEPTIONS.

(a) IN GENERAL- Section 102 does not apply to the collection, disclosure, or use by an internet service provider, online service provider, or operator of a commercial website of information about a user of that service or website necessary--
[snip exceptions 1 & 2]
(3) to provide other products and services integrally related to the transaction, service, product, or arrangement for which the user provided the information.

Who defines integral?

Re:sensitive/non-sensitive (2, Insightful)

Eagle5596 (575899) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417789)

It's not only the definition of integral that opens a loophole, but also the notion of consent. Does a EULA provide consent? Further more notice that it requires you to OPT-OUT! Why should I be required to opt-out of something I am not interested in? Shouldn't I be asked to opt in? How would you like it if you were sent letters from tons of magazines every month saying "You have been added to our subscription list, please send an opt-out notice to our address to remove yourself, otherwise a charge of $21.99 will be billed to your credit card company as payment for services rendered".

Perhaps we should implement a system whereby any company requiring us to opt-out is also required to pay us for the time spent opting out. Even assuming a low baseline salary for computer professionals of $50,000 a year, thats $24/hour spent. If I spend 15 minutes reading the agreement, and writing the e-mail, that's still a good $6 that they owe me for the time they have stolen from my day.

Re:sensitive/non-sensitive (4, Insightful)

mikosullivan (320993) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418019)

"You have been added to our subscription list, please send an opt-out notice to our address to remove yourself, otherwise a charge of $21.99 will be billed to your credit card company as payment for services rendered".

(IANAL) I agree with your feelings on the matter, but there is a distinction, at least insofar as will be perceived by our lawmakers.

(Miko goes into lecture mode, pretending to be the guy in "Paper Chase") A contract requires a specific offer and a pro-active acceptance. A contract also requires consideration on all sides, i.e. everyone involved must get something theoretically of value. (That's why you hear about all those contracts in which someone gets one dollar. That one stinking dollar is the "consideration" received by one of the parties.) The scenario you describe wouldn't be a contract, because you did nothing to initiate the magazine subscription. However, an ISP can currently sell your name and other information and you aren't a party to that contract. You may feel like you're paying something out (your privacy) but that isn't currently recognized as something of consideration.

Furthermore, you can already establish a contract in which the ISP cannot sell your name and number. The problem is that most people don't know/care to do that and the contracts never mention the issue. Even if you tried to do so, most ISPs would simply look at you funny and keep smacking their gum. Ergo, in most real-world situations, the ISP has the right to sell your name because nothing in the contract said they couldn't. However, contracts are not entirely governed by their content. No contract in the world covers every possibility (Clause 182,383,282: Alien Invasions). That's why we have something called the Uniform Commercial Code. The UCC, among other things, sets the defaults for how contracts are interpreted. For example, if you offer to sell someone your car at a specific price (you have to set a specific price) but you don't tell them how long the offer is good, then they have a "reasonable" amount of time to accept. If you're wondering what's "reasonable", so have a lot of judges. One day is definitely reasonable. One year isn't. Now, back to the Hollings bill. What the Hollings bill does (theoretically) is establish some of those clauses that aren't explicitly covered in your contract with the ISP. The bill says, in effect, that unless the contract says otherwise, the ISP can sell your information, but if you tell them not to, they can't. Also, the ISP has to make it clear to you that if they intend to sell your info.

Who says the law ain't fun? Why, this stuff is almost as good as OOP.

Re:sensitive/non-sensitive (2)

Random Feature (84958) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418031)

What you describe is similar to the methods of telemarketers today - although their tactics are really an "opt-in" they try to sell it fast as an opt-out.

You've heard the talk -

"We're going to send you X free and all you have to do is look it over for FREE for 30 days and if you don't like it you can just call and cancel. All I need to do is verify your address, do you still live at 123 Main Street blah blah blah"

They try to use aggressive tactics to get you to opt-in to an opt-out subscription.

But at least you have the option of saying "NO YOU FUX0R, leave me alone."

Unlike the OPT-OUT availability here. Which will quickly be abused to subscribe you to paying services that are FREE for the first 30 days and if you continue...

Cause everyone knows we just hit delete and don't actually read SPAM.

Re:sensitive/non-sensitive (1)

bhima (46039) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417930)

Who defines integral?
Microsoft Does: MSIE is integral to every one of their recent operating systems.
Got it?

Re:Who defines integral? (2, Funny)

Eagle5596 (575899) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417975)

Who defines integral?

Actually there is a very concrete and inarguable definition for integral:

(in'ti-gr&l) Mathematics a. A number computed by a limiting process in which the domain of a function, often an interval or planar region, is divided into arbitrarily small units, the value of the function at a point in each unit is multiplied by the linear or areal measurement of that unit, and all such products are summed. b. A definite integral. c. An indefinite integral.

:) Sorry for the math joke, but somebody had to say it :)

Re:sensitive/non-sensitive (1)

chaoticset (574254) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418023)

I'll guess: Senator Disney?

Re:sensitive/non-sensitive (3, Interesting)

Ibag (101144) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417855)

One reason I dislike the bill is because I am not sure what they really mean by robust notice. If the salon article is right, the small bit they had in the kazaa liscense about BDE could count as robust notice.

Another reason I dislike the bill is because it requires opt-out. While this is better than nothing being required, it is easy to hide the option to opt out or to put the access to the option to opt out somewhere you can't access till you have allready registered. I don't want anybody selling my personal information before they've even given me a chance to opt out.

With those two thing, the bill unsettles me. Why can't it require things to be opt in? If a website had something clear that said "If you give us consent to collect and sell your personal information, check this box" I would have no qualms. In that case, you know both that the user does consent and that if you do not consent, then you won't be shafted.

While stuff like this should be regulated, it should not be under these terms.

Necessary Legislation? (2)

CynicTheHedgehog (261139) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417903)

Perhaps, but the timing is supsect. And this may be slightly off topic, but what I see here is a poker chip Hollings can use to get his other bill passed. A few people really interested in seeing this thing become law, but that aren't too crazy about the CBDTPA, may be persuaded to compromise.

And besides all that, how are they going to enforce this?

If the American Criminal Lovers Union likes it... (0, Troll)

asmithmd1 (239950) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417624)

Then it must be good
Urge Your Members of Congress to Support the Federal Agency Protection of Privacy Act!

Anti-Civil Liberties Union? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417648)

Do you mean this ACLU, which in California supported state policy to punish people for their skin color (they were against the Civil Rights Initiative there)

The same ACLU that files lawsuits seeking to gag and censor people's 1st amendment protected free speech if this speech happens to involve a majority religion?

The same ACLU that is seeking to have the government control (fund) political campaigns in an attempt to muffle political expression by citizens?

Re:Anti-Civil Liberties Union? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417725)

No, i think he means the ACLU that seeks to keep school children from having to pray to gods they don't believe in.

I think he means the ACLU that seeks to end the outright bribery of our public officials.

As for the case in California, i'm not informed on that topic, so i don't know.

Re:Anti-Civil Liberties Union? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417793)

These are the same ACLU's. The ACLU's policies would not end bribery, but they would damage free speech. As for "school children from having to pray to gods", that is fine. The ACLU is on the right side on some issues. However, they also censor people who pray to gods they DO believe in.

Check into the California case. The ACLU opposed an initiative that would have banned the government for punishing people of being the wrong race. It did pass. Isn't there a Constitutional amendment about not punishing people without due process?

"Privacy Impact Statement"??!? (2)

wowbagger (69688) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417641)

OK, so let's think about this:

Yes, our software will upload the entire contents of the user's brain onto our servers, where we can scan through it and analyze it for marketing vulnerabilities. Privacy impact? Uhhh, NONE. We will never (snigger) share this information with anyone (sotto voice: who doesn't pay) so there is no privacy impact whatsoever!


I trust corporations who are intent on invading my privacy to prepare a proper privacy impact statement like I trust burglars to lock up after they are done.

Upload your brain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417718)

Yes, our software will upload the entire contents of the user's brain onto our servers.

For you, won't that take less than 2 minutes on a 2400 baud modem?

I think I see his nefarious plan... (5, Funny)

phong3d (61297) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417643)

I think Hollings is actually a visionary! He realizes that the high-tech industry can bring a lot of jobs and money into a state, and South Carolina's not really one of the hot geek destinations right now.

So, he's decided that if he can sponsor enough loony internet-related bills, he'll rile up enough geeks to move to South Carolina for the sole purpose of voting him out of office. Once they're settled there, they'll figure they might as well get jobs and some entreprenurial-minded individuals will start businesses that will eventually boost the economy of the state!

I have to admit, it's a brilliant plan from a brilliant senator, whose love of his state far outweighs petty concerns like hundreds of thousands of dollars in lobbyist contributions.

Bravo, Senator Hollings, bravo!

Re:I think I see his nefarious plan... (1)

MindStalker (22827) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417872)

Insightful?
This is not insightful, its funny, but he's not being serious you guys.

TrustE -- Not! (3, Insightful)

floppy ears (470810) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417644)

From the Epic site: Hewlett Packard urged inclusion of a safe harbor provision in the Act to insulate companies from enforcement if they are members of a certified seal program such as BBBOnline or TrustE.

Oh, yes, of course, if they are members of wonderful TrustE then they'll nevvver evvver violate our privacy. That's why TrustE busted Yahoo! for changing our marketing preferences, right?

Seriously, has TrustE ever busted anybody -- at least any company that we've ever heard of?

wesley willis (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417650)

rock over london, rock on chicago
chuck e cheeses: it's where little kids pee in the ball pit

...more legislation (0, Flamebait)

gstevens (209321) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417653)

Lovely, just more legislation for the hell of it. We get closer to a totalitarian state every day...
We've gotta keep those Senators and Reps employed, you know.

(Please note: I am not for or against any of these bills, as I have not read them. However, I am completely frustrated with the number of bills pertaining to person freedom that are getting introduced every day.)

Personal data is easy to get off of gov't. servers (3, Funny)

Artifice_Eternity (306661) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417656)


The resourceful team at the Subversive Intellectual Society [subintsoc.net] managed to dig up a whole series of confidential letters [subintsoc.net] sent to people like David Koresh, Ted Kaczynski, Elian Gonzalez, and others, by various government agencies.

Maybe they'll dig up Senator "SSSCA" Hollings' tax returns next. Or his CD or video purchases...I'd love to see those...

;)

This is an obvious (and very funny) hoax... (1)

Zufall (555636) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417817)


These are the same folks responsible for the great Create Your Own Terror Warning [subintsoc.net] page...

ANd they claim to be having a legal dispute with Wired magazine [subintsoc.net] .

True or not, it's very entertaining.

Basis of the law (-1, Offtopic)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417658)

The fucking basis of the law is that people won't sign up for broadband unless fucking Hollywood puts their content online. Don't they fucking know that 1) people are already signing up for broadband at a pretty good rate and 2) the content of Hollywood is already online? The fucking horse is out of the barn already. This is a fucking example of astonishing cluelessness.

Sigh ... (4, Informative)

ProfMoriarty (518631) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417666)

The problem with OPPA (as its currently called) is obvious (to those who read the article).

Unfortunately, this legislation looks likely it would pass, since it isn't as obvious to what's really going on ...

The second is "nonsensitive" information, and among that will include your name, address, and records of anything you buy or surf on the Internet.

Under the act, business can't collect or divulge the sensitive bits without your express consent, but anything classified as nonsensitive can be freely collected and sold at will.

Re:Sigh ...subpeonas, was (2)

ghostlibrary (450718) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417723)

The second is "nonsensitive" information, and among that will include your name, address, and records of anything you buy or surf on the Internet.

Oh, like all the stuff in the real world that requires a subpeona currently (e.g. book-buying habits) is now "non-sensitive"? Eek! Bye bye, civil liberties!

This disturbs me more each day (4, Insightful)

Eagle5596 (575899) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417684)

What bothers me most is that I think he will pass his bill, given that he can market it under false pretenses to both sides. By far the most disturbing part of this proposed bill however, is what they deem "nonsensitive information", namely my name, address, and shopping/surfing habits.

Don't be fooled, your name and address are two of the most sensitive peices of information you posses! In the hands of malicious people, it can simply be taken down to the DMV to bring up your file, and the unfortunate state of things is that most people list their social security number as their drivers ID (I changed mine to an anonymous number after taking a class in privacy, when we learned about the growing number of cases of identity theft). The fact of the matter is, I don't want people to have access to this sort of thing unless I give them it expressly. I also don't want information on my shopping and surfing habits getting released as it leads to phone soclicitations, as well as spam. What happened to the rights of the consumer? Why does congress allow bribes to give corperations the upper hand?

The world is changing rapidly, and our time is increasingly sucked away by meaningless adds. My parents can still remember a time not so long ago when junk mail was practically unheard of. Now we are saturated with it.

I think we ought to push for a bill which affords us a form of personal protection akin to the laws against tresspassing. In my opinion all cookies, spyware, etc that are installed on a computer without express permission from the user (EULA's are no good as no one reads them, and besides, we would be outraged if everyday were provided with a huge list of random comments, buried within which was a grant to tresspass on our property if we exit our house), should subject their makers to a fine. As a computer professional, my machines are a place I spend a considerable ammount of time, and I have a right to not have others intrude on my privacy.

As a final point, I realize that you can disable cookies, and most spyware, but it is ridiculous to assume that this makes them all right. Many people do not know how to do so, and above all else, we should never have to arm our computers with defenses just to preserve our rights. That is analogous to requiring everyone to bring a body guard when they left the house, or it would be legal to mug them.

*steps off of soapbox*, Sorry my wife is an IP lawyer and deals with this stuff everyday. We need more computing professionals in the government and law.

Dealing with phone solicitors (1)

sheetsda (230887) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418167)

I also don't want information on my shopping and surfing habits getting released as it leads to phone solicitations

Just a little tidbit I picked up a long time ago (probably on this site), phone solicitation companies are required by the FCC to keep a do-not-call list (different from saying "remove me from your calling list", because they can't reacquire and reuse your name and number) and are required to add you to it at your request. If they call thereafter or claim they don't have such a list you are entitled something like $500 and/or a lawsuit. I've been told they're also legally barred from calling cell phone numbers so I just put in my cell number in all forms I fill out online. I hardly ever get soliciting calls any more and my cell has never gotten one.

FSF Member Kit! (-1)

ReluctantBadger (550830) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417688)


"Free Software" User Kit For a limited time only, get your FSF member kit. Each kit includes:
  • one of pair sandals / jesus boots (beige, one size fits all) white socks not included
  • fresh roadkill which can be stuck to face with white pvc children's glue to simulate a beard
  • humorous computing t-shirt (poorly printed logo and unwashed)
  • various biro pens (chewed)
  • techie book of nostalgic MIT in-jokes which are no longer funny
  • souped up calculator with go-faster stripe and supports Linux
  • set book "Communism : The Red Way"
  • Halitosis Voucher - Buy one garlic based meal, get another free

All this can be yours for the bargain price of US$99.95 plus $10.95 shipping and handling. Order now, and you could be the talk of the cube farm!
Kit comes with everything shown and will be shipped via UPS Ground for maximum damage en-route. MOD ME DOWN!!! tee hee!

"Fritz Hollings" is today's secret word! (4, Funny)

Lendrick (314723) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417694)

From now on, when you type the words "Fritz Hollings [goatse.cx] ", be sure to link him to goatse.cx! Instead of just typing his name, type:

<a href='http://goatse.cx'>Fritz Hollings</a>

No sense of humor? Go ahead and mod me down [goatse.cx] . I don't mind.

Re:"Fritz Hollings" is today's secret word! (2)

PD (9577) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417806)

Now that would be a spectacular stunt, and with all the slashdotter here doing it, we might just get that link into the top rankings of google.

So, please, don't click on this link, it's just for google:

Fritz Hollings [goatse.cx]

Re:"Fritz Hollings" is today's secret word! (1)

sisukapalli1 (471175) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417833)

Wait until the goatse.cx people start complaining about getting a bad name when you link more such senators.

S

Re:"Fritz Hollings" is today's secret word! (1)

Order (469817) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417835)

Better yet, put Fritz Hollings in your sig!

Re:"Fritz Hollings" is today's secret word! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417887)

Fritz Hollings [goatse.cx] push him into google oblivion!!!!

Re:"Fritz Hollings" is today's secret word! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3418314)

Fritz Hollings [goatse.cx] link him to oblivion!

These same people accusing us of (3, Insightful)

Vicegrip (82853) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417696)

wanting free rides in our use of purchased media, complaining vigorously about the perceived lost dollars the legitamit exercise of personal use costs them... these people are now turning around and wanting a free-ride with my personal data?

I think not. Let me take the time to personally assure any politicians who happen to read Slashdot that a their support for this kind of initiative wil gurantee them my lost support, regardless of party, in their next bid for re-election.

Re:These same people accusing us of (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417929)

You could run that argument in reverse as well. You want free rides in your use of purchased media, and yet you aren't willing to give companies access to your personal data?

The fact is the two issues are really not all that comparable.

Unwashed masses do deal with Devil, get burnt. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417729)

News at 11.

Subjectivity rears its ugly head again (2, Interesting)

CyberLife (63954) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417738)

My only problem with this is that the decision of what to make opt-in and opt-out is truely subjective. One person might consider their purchase history to be sensitive data, while another might think their medical history is not.

I know it's not a cut and dried issue, but I still feel that complete opt-in is the best way.

Re:Subjectivity rears its ugly head again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417911)

I know it's not a cut and dried issue, but I still feel that complete opt-in is the best way.

I really don't understand why people have this concern. You opt-in when you send them your information. They are required by this law to tell you what they are collecting before you let them collect it.

The further corporatization of the web (3, Interesting)

anthony_dipierro (543308) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417758)

My biggest problem with the bill is that it will further enhance the corporatization of the web. Imagine if slashdot had to comply with these rules when it first started out. The access rules alone would be a nightmare (imagine sorting through gigs and gigs of server logs to find all the instances of one person's IP address, printing them out, and mailing them, all for $3). Add the cost of defending litigation, and hiring lawyers just to ensure compliance, and quite simply, slashdot would not have existed.

It would be kind of neat to be able to request from companies all the information they have about me, but this is something that should be optional, not mandatory. The government should set up a certification program, similar to truste, and offer it to those who have the resources to comply. Then the user can decide for him/herself whether they want to go to a certified site or not.

Nothing wrong with corporatization in itself. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417853)

It's given us Yahoo, Google, free Geocities websites, ISP's and everything else that has made the Internet so much useful and fun (despite the spam and avalanche windows). I'd rather not go back to the Government Internet. Gopher, anyone?

Re:Nothing wrong with corporatization in itself. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417882)

Yahoo and Geocities both started out as non-corporate sites. Same thing with Hotmail, ICQ, and others.

Re:Nothing wrong with corporatization in itself. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417895)

Really? They did not incorporate in any way to protect from frivolous lawsuits? No filings of any kind?

Re:Nothing wrong with corporatization in itself. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417949)

Nope.

Coming in to line with the EU (2)

Jon Chatow (25684) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417813)

These 'privacy statements' sound like the requirement that the EU's Directive on Data Protection (enacted under UK law as the Data Protection Act [hmso.gov.uk] ) imposes on organisations, governmental, corporate or otherwise, to have a publically available privacy statement (amongst other items, such as rapid access to all information held by an organisation on request for a 'reasonable' handling fee, and so on).

Grumble (1)

volkris (694) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417822)

Grumble grumble, privacy impact statements are a waste of effort and taxpayers' money, grumble grumble....

biting the hand that feeds one (3, Interesting)

tps12 (105590) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417847)

I just don't get it. I may be asking to get modded down for saying this on slashdot, but it's worth a shot.

I mean, we geeks are virtually (heck, actually!) the only people in the world who appreciate privacy. Obviously, the smarter, more connected, more civilized one is, etc., the more use one gets out of privacy.

Now I understand that the senator in question does not have what we would call a good "track record" with respect to the individual Rights that make this country good (let's face it, he's a stinker). But when it comes right down to it, I'm inclined to call a spade a spade, and not look a gift horse in the mouth.

IANAL but, IIRC, support of this bill or legislation or what have you does not lock us in to future or past legislation, though they may all be by the same guy! Yes, in the past I would have been in favor of opposing him and not reelecting him, but the fact is, if it walks like a duck...

I say, support Privacy, support this Bill and the Constitution. To the Death, as our forefathers would have.

We will send him, and all others like him, a powerful message: shape up or ship out. But the key is, we are giving him the option to make good on his pledge to the People. And second chances, my friends, is what America is all about.

Re:biting the hand that feeds one (2)

Telastyn (206146) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418241)

The only problem is that the proposed bill will not support privacy. It significantly hurts the "way things should be".

the "Way Things Should Be(tm)":

companies may not collect any of my information without my explicit, non-clickthrough authorization. They may not store longer than a week, resell, retransmit, redistribute, or publish my information without my explicit,non-clickthrough authorization, and only then for the purpose to complete the service I requested of them, for the limited period of time I specify.

It's my information. My Privacy.

This bill says that only my "personally identifyable" information is mine. But I'm REQUIRED to give that for the right to drive, or to get social security, or to get a credit card, or even a loan to buy a house.

From there that information can be correlated to other things to find out if I drink, or like kinky sex, or vote Republican. People, Companies, and even worse my Government can then use that to persecute me.

Do not accept less than full control of your privacy.

Re:biting the hand that feeds one (1)

bilbobuggins (535860) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418278)

And second chances, my friends, is what America is all about.

The CDBTA(sp?) was his second chance. His first was the Communications Decency Act [epic.org] (see here [senate.gov] ), a bill so restrictive that it was struck down by the supreme court.
Trust me, this guy is never going to repent and see the error of his ways or other some romantic BS. He needs to leave, now.

You don't get it. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417884)

Think about it. All this means is that some bureaucratic review board or administrative judge is going to decide what is "private" and what is not. Composed of ex-CEO's and board members of akamai, double-click, etc. etc. and token activist times. Maybe Joan Claybrook or Esther Dyson. Whoopee. Naturally, they'll need a budget for staff, office space, administrative overhead, etc.

It won't Sen. Hollings and his colleagues; they'll be off the hook, free to posture, grandstand, and milk the situation for new "here's what I did for privacy" bills "cracking down" on some privacy violations while legitimizing others. And certainly not you, who will be dragged down to the lowest common denominator of what's acceptable, whether it actually works, or serves as veiled protection and license for data-mining and police-state surveillance interests, as is likely to happen, if past performance of these kinds of mechanisms is any indication.

We're better off with no govt. protection here, and people should start taking far better care of their own privacy themselves. They're fucked if they don't, regardless.

I guess everyone is forgetting all the crappy environmental laws and reviews that killed good projects while entrenching bad ones. Collective amnesia? Or is everyone just willing to pretend because "it's good for Mother Earth". Or so is the claim.

No, this is just yet another example of Congress passing the buck and shifting the blame in a hypocritical and self-serving manner. Fuck the dumb shit. Vote against Hollings and his kind next election.

--rgb

Re:You don't get it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3417977)

If that don't sway you, how can you trust Hollings after SSSCA, which ain't dead yet, either.

--rgb

p.s. when I said "his kind", I wasn't referring to the Democratics. I meant any pol not willing to lose his seat over not selling out principles worth more than the lip service they're given.

Credit where credit is due (2, Interesting)

sam_handelman (519767) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417910)

Sen. Hollings (likewise his secret masters at Disney) may not be my favorite legislator, and he may sponsor a lot of bills which I do not like, but this is a good law. The things that Salon complains about the bill "legitimising" are already 100% legal, unfortunately. While the bill is too weak, I will say this: it is not true that weak provisions make stronger provisions unlikely by assuaging the fears of the sheep-like masses, instead, they shift the social pendulum to make stronger measures more feasible in the future. I support half-measures 100% - yes, this makes me a liberal.

Now that Sen. Hollings has sponsored a piece of good legislation - I'm not a lawyer but I trust EPIC to know totally fake privacy legislation when they see it - he deserves credit for doing the right thing, not continued vilification for the mistakes he's made in the past. Classifying him (or Disney, for that matter) as our Eternal Foe just because he (foolishly, ignorantly) sought to curtail our rights on one occasion is not the way to go. I, personally, know a lot of fine, upstanding people who work in the Movies (none actually at Disney, but hey, if Pat Robertson hate them that much they can't be all bad), some of whom even supported the CBDTPA, and lumping them in with Hitler as people with whom any dialogue is "appeasement" is neither productive nor justified.

So, Kudos to the H-man. Keep it up.

Re:Credit where credit is due (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3418166)

"not continued vilification for the mistakes he's made in the past."

The past?? I hope you realize that the CBDTPA is not a dead issue - it's very much in the present, and will likely be in the future. Unless you have some secret memo from him showing that he's changed his mind?

What about "Sensitive" data? (4, Insightful)

BranMan (29917) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417916)

Most of the focus on discussion I have seen so far has been addressing the "non-sensitive" information, and how this bill will open the flood gates to allow companies to collect and share it on a massive scale.

I think this is a huge problem, BUT - doesn't anyone else see the problem with how "sensitive" data is defined in this bill?

Sensitive data can only be collected or shared on an opt-in basis. Sounds good, but isn't medical information (one of the "sensitive" items) protected more highly by the HIPPA acts? Won't this act undo everything HIPPA did to help protect medical records? All it takes is one hidden or weasle worked opt-in box to release all your medical information. Or finantial information. Once out there, it can be sold. Then it's gone for good - opting out at that point won't do any good.

We need to raise a huge stink about how trivially this bill handles critical private information - medical, finantial and other records.

Lessig on privacy and fair use (3, Informative)

jonathanjo (415010) | more than 12 years ago | (#3417920)

Lawrence Lessig [slashdot.org] , in his book "Code", points out that the trend in the commodification of the web is for our personal information to be traded and sold by companies without our consent, and meanwhile for corporate "intellectual property" to be protected from unauthorized use with the full force of code and law.

Lessig argues that these situations should be exactly reversed. Personal info should be treated as property owned by us; anyone who takes it without our consent should be subject to lawsuit or criminal charges, and if we choose to allow it to get bought & sold, we should get a cut of the proceeds. It's our data, after all. But for other types of data that doesn't identify any individual, including copywrighted works, there should be mechanisms that allow us fair use to use them and share them as we will, without actually overstepping our rights under copyright law. As it is, as we all know, our rights under copyright are being eroded by encryption and the DMCA. We should have that kind of infrastructure (*and* law) protecting our personal data that the RIAA wants to have protecting their work.

J

Intellectual property? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3418032)

....info should be treated as property...

Huh? You argue against the DMCA, but it is arguments like the one above that are used to support the DMCA and similar efforts at censorship. There have to be better ways to protect privacy than "intellectual property" arguments.

Re:Intellectual property? (3, Interesting)

jonathanjo (415010) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418303)

Huh? You argue against the DMCA, but it is arguments like the one above that are used to support the DMCA and similar efforts at censorship. There have to be better ways to protect privacy than "intellectual property" arguments.

You misunderstand, good Coward. I think it may be possible and indeed possibly even desirable to define all personal identifying information about a person as properly belonging under that person's control, in a similar fashion that we consider a person's property to be under their control. Hollywood wants us to see creative works as "intellectual property", and they are wrong. But perhaps a property metaphor may prove useful as we attempt to navigate a way of allowing individuals control over who knows what about them.

J

screw the law (1)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418045)

and just spoof your IP address... thats the best way of having internet privacy...


--Dont like having money? Vote Democrat

More Bureaucracy? (2, Insightful)

mr.fr0g (451806) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418061)

It looks as though this second bill (dealing with the creation of privacy impact analyses) would do little more than increase the mountains of paperwork required for the creation of new laws. So, the law would require agencies to create these reports, and then release "to the public." How on earth would this help _anything at all_? The public can read laws now, we can decide whether or not the law limits our privacy--and then we can protest if see fit. Its not as though the law will provide a new means whereby to protest, it's just making lawmakers butcher a few hundred more trees every year to help build the image of some
Georgia senator.

The only possible use I could see for these 'privacy impact reports' is in the press, where such documents would provide easily quotable material. But is that really enough reason to add to the crippling bureaucracy already in place?

Vote Hollings out.... It's the right thing to do! (1)

Eric Damron (553630) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418280)

Well, Hollings is known for being pro-business. If you live in SC vote him out!

His bill would require an opt-in for all information that is already protected and an opt-out for the information that needs protecting. Opt out has never worked. For every opt-out email you send, ten more companies add you to their list.

About the only way an opt-out strategy would give us the protection that we want is to make a central opt-out repository. If you're listed there then you want your information out of ALL information warehouses.

Yeap, Good ol' boy Hollings. One of the best politicians that money can buy.

Federal Preemption (3, Interesting)

MountainLogic (92466) | more than 12 years ago | (#3418316)

I wonder if this bill will preempt the state's rights to pass stronder bills. If so this could, in the long run, resuilt in less privacy. Right now many of your local legislators are writing very strong privacy protectin bills, but a federal bill will at the least put the breaks on state efforts and at the worst over ride state laws with weaker federal protection. This bill may be better than we have now, but any holes in it could give away your privacy for a very long time. I wonder how the marketoids feel about this bill?
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