Samir’s Selection 06/11/2013 (p.m.)
Edward Snowden and the security state laid bare | Clay Shirky | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk
Surveillance: Should the government know less than Google? | The Economist
Here’s the basic point. In the online world, essentially everything we do is always being archived and searched by the companies that provide us access. There was a time when we might have asked whether those companies should be barred from using that behavioural information for commercial purposes, but that ship sailed long ago. The question we’re asking now is whether the government should be allowed to gain access to those private search archives for national security purposes. The government isn’t spying on us; Google is spying on us, and the government is asking Google for certain results.
We need to think coherently about what we find scary here. The problem isn’t so much that we haven’t set up a legal architecture to preserve our online privacy from the government; it’s that we haven’t set up a legal architecture to preserve our online privacy from anyone at all. If we don’t have laws and regulations that create meaningful zones of online privacy from corporations, the attempt to create online privacy from the government will be an absurdity.
Tech Companies Tread Lightly in Statements on U.S. Spying – NYTimes.com
These companies did not just say “no comment.” They flat-out denied involvement. Mr. Sporkin said, “They are probably not being completely forthcoming, but they are probably not lying.” He noted that the statements were highly vetted by legal teams.
While the companies might have wanted to stick in “no comment” mode, a version of peer pressure kicked in, said one chief executive who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the fragility of the situation. Once one company issued a flat denial, the others felt they had to follow suit, he said…
One explanation for the distinction between the corporate denials and the leaked presentation was explained this way in The Washington Post, which along with The Guardian posted several slides from a 41-page presentation about the Internet program: “It is possible that the conflict between the Prism slides and the company spokesmen is the result of imprecision on the part of the N.S.A. author.”
After Newtown shooting, mourning parents enter into the lonely quiet – The Washington Post
Out back was the wooden play structure where he had knocked his head and bled for the first time, which sometimes made Mark and Jackie wonder about the last time. Had it been quick? Had he been scared? Had anybody held him?
Is It Possible to Keep Electronic Secrets? | Scientific American
Cryptic Overtures and a Clandestine Meeting Gave Birth to a Blockbuster Story – NYTimes.com
Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.